Life

We All Need Someone Who Truly Understands Us

I don’t live a conventional life by any means.

I’ve been with my wife for almost 14 years and we’ve been married for 6. It took us 7 years, 7 months and 7 days to get married. We got married after hopping on a helicopter in Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon with two friends.

We had decided on that option two months earlier, but got our rings the week before in San Francisco and we found our tux and gown two days before the wedding.

I don’t know how she agreed to that, but it makes for a good story.

We’ve been together for that long, yet we don’t have children or don’t own property. Or not anymore at least (the property part). We had bought a brand-new condominium in downtown Montreal when we were 21 and 23, which we sold for good profit a year after. We were still students at the time.

I did over 12 different jobs, starting when I was 8 years old. I’m a terrible employee. It’s not that my work ethics are bad, it’s just that I’m more of an entrepreneur. In fact, I’ve launched 5 companies, most of which “failed”.

Three years ago, my wife and I left to travel the world for a year. We both left our really nice job and gave all our belongings away. When we came back to Toronto after, we couldn’t stand having a “regular” life, so we left again a year later.

Audrey went to work for Doctors Without Borders and I switched to having a nomadic lifestyle.

Any of the above sounds normal to you?

And I’m not saying it’s good or bad. It’s just different.

But if you tried to be different yourself, I’m sure you’ve noticed how society has a way to cast away people who are different.

People have a hard time getting it when you’re different.

They judge. The reprimand. They lecture you.

They can’t accept that you’ve chosen a path that’s different than theirs.

And that last part is what gets me the most.

Why can’t people accept that we’re not all the same? And that’s for the better. For everyone.

Being Understood

Two evenings ago, Audrey and I went to dinner with her aunt, Hope.

We always love chatting her. Every time we chat with her, we feel so uplifted. She lives in a very different context than we do. She lives a more traditional way of life, yet she gets us.

She’s always happy for us. She shows interest and gives the right input on everything we say. She’s incredibly wise.

A lot of our family doesn’t get our lifestyle.

“No kids, no home, no stable job at our age? There’s something terribly wrong with you!”

But that’s not how Hope thinks.

She doesn’t have kids herself, but she’s got a home and a stable job. It doesn’t stop her from understanding us. She knows not everyone is the same.

She is one of the rare ones who truly understands us.

Conclusion

You see, it’s okay not to be understood by everyone, but you need at least one person who truly understands you.

The feeling you get when someone listens to you and understands you is so uplifting.

It gives you the courage to keep going. To work towards the change you want to make in life.

It gives you the power to accomplish your wildest dreams and aim higher.

It makes it okay to be different.

  • Are you different?

  • Who truly understands you?

  • Have you told them? Have you thanked them for it?

  • Who do you show your support to?

Being truly understood is important for anyone’s sanity and development. Think about that concept, and show support to the people you care about.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading and sharing ! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/we-all-need-someone-who-truly-understands-us-9f5f3430abcc

Becoming, Attracting And Creating, According to Buddha

Buddha needs no introduction. He’s the main figure of one of the most practiced religion in the world. Everyone has at least heard of him.

But I’m going to say that right away: this is NOT a post about religion. I do not pretend to understand buddhism, or any other religion for that matter.

I simply believe that inspiration can be found anywhere, wether it’s your environment, your friends, your family, your experiences, your beliefs, etc. It doesn’t matter. There are good lessons to learn from everywhere.

“What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create.” — Buddha

What you think, you become

What do you think of yourself?

Do you act according to this belief?

How did you get there?

Work backwards in your thinking. Start from where you are now, and rewind a year. Did you become what you thought?

I’m quite different from what I was 6 months ago. I had good ideas of what I wanted to become. At least on a broad scale.

I have become it, and a little more.

BUT!

Thinking without action doesn’t make you become. Neither does acting without thinking.

As I wrote in You Are, Or Will Become What You Do:

Most of us want to be more than what we currently are. Yet we do nothing to make it happen.

Plan your days, at least one day in advance (Think). Be precise with time. Execute consistently (Do).

Before you know it, you’ll have become the things you have been thinking and doing.

What you feel, you attract

We are SO emotionally influenced by our surroundings.

Everyone is happy at a party.

Everyone is sad at a funeral.

If you’re negative, you’ll attract negativity. If you’re positive, you’ll attract positivity.

I’m a positive guy. Especially outwardly. The truth is, I fake it sometimes. And it’s a hack I propose to you.

When something negative happens to you, force yourself to think positively, however hard that may be. Your brain will need convincing. Act it out long enough and you’ll convince it.

Here’s a quote I really like from Conor McGregor:

“At the end of the day, you’ve gotta feel some way. So why not feel unbeatable? Why not feel untouchable?” — Conor McGregor

When I feel unstoppable, people around me catch my vibe.

I un-intentionally started a fitness group at the co-working space I worked from. I just wanted to be more fit, so I thought, and acted. I started doing push-ups.

People laughed. People judged. People got curious. People joined.

I started a movement, simply because I felt I was unstoppable at fitness.

What you imagine, you create

Reflexion is an incredibly powerful tool to motivate you to act and create whatever it is you want to create.

In our busy day-to-day routine, we rarely take the time to reflect. Reflect on ourselves, reflect on our day, reflect on our environment, reflect on our future.

We don’t take the time to let our imagination run wild through reflexion, or deep thinking.

Lately, I’ve picked up Meditation and Journaling as some of the 3 skills I learn every month.

My mind has never been so clear. With the fog gone, I am free to imagine anything.

By doing this consciously, I can write all my ideas that pass by. Good or bad. Sometimes, from bad ideas stem great ideas. It’s a process.

Let your imagination run wild. There are no boundaries. No impossible.

If you let yourself think something is impossible, it will be.

If you let yourself imagine the path to success, you will create that path.

Conclusion

Become: Thinking without action doesn’t make you become. Neither does acting without thinking.

Attract: If you’re negative, you’ll attract negativity. If you’re positive, you’ll attract positivity.

Create: If you let yourself think something is impossible, it will be.

Think and Become. Feel and Attract. Imagine and Create.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading and sharing ! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/becoming-attracting-and-creating-according-to-buddha-49694643e5a

41 Things You Should Say “No” To To Become The Person You Want To Be In Life And Business

Bonus: Say “No” to scrolling through photos of cute puppies on the internet.

A lot of people think “success” is about saying “yes” to the right stuff. Well, that’s one side of a coin. There are many things we say “yes” to that we really should be saying “no” to.

I do many things in life, and all that started with the 3 skills I learn every month. If you read the story, you would think I’m a “yes” man, but truth be told, I’m a professional “no” man.

Personality

1. Mediocrity

You’re almost always better than you think you are.

“I’d rather choke on greatness than nibble on mediocracy” — https://boldomatic.com/p/SRmdTA/i-d-rather-choke-on-greatness-than-nibble-on-mediocracy

2. Procrastination

Stop thinking, start doing.

“It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live.” — Marcus Aurelius

3. Talking Shit About Yourself

Be positive. Don’t seek loathing, seek improvement.

“Don’t wish it was easier wish you were better. Don’t wish for less problems wish for more skills. Don’t wish for less challenge wish for more wisdom.” — Jim Rohn

“Just remember; someone loves everything you hate about yourself” — Frank Ocean

4. Selfishness

Be a giver. Be happier.

“Selfish people end up having only their self.” — http://www.lovequotesmessages.com/selfish-quotes/

5. Perfection

Don’t waste time on perfection. Great is good enough.

6. Excuses

Ask why three times and you’ll know the real reason.

“Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses” — George Washington Carver

7. Always Comparing To Others

Spend time on self-improvement over fascination over competitors.

“Comparison is the thief of joy.” — Theodore Roosevelt

8. Impulsive Decisions

Think deeper.

“Impulsiveness is the enemy of deep thinking” — https://www.askideas.com/60-best-thinking-quotes-and-sayings/

Health & Sleep

9. Unhealthy Food

The more you eat healthy, the tastier the food gets.

“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live in.” — http://www.quotesofdaily.com/quote-on-eating-healthy/quote-on-eating-healthy-nice-and-funny-food-quotes/

10. Skipping A Meal

Your brain needs all the good nutrients it can get to function optimally. Eat better, not less.

11. Taking The Car

The grocery store is 15 minutes walk away? Walk to it!

12. The Snooze Button

Be so focused on achieving your goals and set tight deadlines and you won’t ever think about snoozing anymore!

“You Snooze, You Lose” — smart people

13. Partying Every Night

Enjoy a party, but don’t forget your goals, and resting of course!

“Everything in moderation, including moderation.” — Oscar Wilde

14. Stimulants Before Bed

Don’t get in the way of a good sleep.

“Sleep is the best meditation” — Dalai Lama

Productivity

15. Long Commute

Waste as little time as possible on non-productive activities.

16. Distractions

When comes time to be productive. Shut any distractions down.

“You can’t do big things if you’re distracted by small things” — http://www.picturequotes.com/distraction-quotes

17. Blockers Of Personal Progress

Bad friend? Block. Netflix? Block. Video Games? Block. Unblock when comes time to unwind.

18. Reading Things You Don’t Enjoy

Seriously. You don’t have to finish everything you start! The author won’t know. Stop reading shit things, there’s too much great stuff out there!

19. Completing Useless Things

Plan things. Organize priorities. Do the ones that matter.

“Nothing is less productive than to make more efficient what should not be done at all.” ~ Peter Drucker

20. Planning Things That Don’t Need Planning

Planning is great and all, but don’t forget to execute!

“Just do it!” — Nike

Relationships

21. Takers

Say “yes” to givers. Give yourself.

“Know the difference between those who stay to feed the soil and those who come to grab the fruit.” — https://www.pinterest.com/explore/takers-quotes/

22. Social Media

Uninstall the Facebook, Twitter and Instagram apps from your phone. BAM! I gave you back an hour of your day!

23. Talking Shit About Others

Always be honest. Don’t be a hater.

“Don’t do unto others what you don’t want others to do unto you.” — unknown

24. Listening To Complaints About Others

Gossiping is poisonous. Avoid people who spread it.

“Who gossips to you will gossip of you” — Turkish Proverb

25. Naysayers

If someone doesn’t have time for you, don’t find time for them. Relationships are mutual.

Work-Life Balance

26. Bad Routines

Don’t get stuck in a non-productive routine. You can change things around.

27. Meetings Without An Agenda

These tend to last too long and have no focus. No sense of direction. Avoid them.

28. Overly Long Team Meetings

Bring people back on track or leave. Seems rude, but in the long run, people will thank you for it.

29. Bad Clients

To hell with the good money. If a client is not good to you, focus your energy on the good clients.

“It is better to starve than get a bad client.” — Massimo Vignelli

30. Good

Say “yes” to great.

“Good is the enemy of great” — Jim Collins

31. Cluttered Environment

Have a clean workspace, both physically, mentally and on your computer.

32. Responding To Messages Ad-hoc

As much as possible set blocks of times to answer messages.

33. Doing Life Stuff At Work

Give your full attention to your work, it won’t go unnoticed.

34. Doing Work Stuff At Home

Give you full attention to your family, it won’t go unnoticed.

“When you work, work. When you play, play. Don’t mix the two.” — Jim Rohn

35. Doing Things You Can Delegate

Find your superpower, delegate the stuff that’s outside of it.

36. A Bad Business Partner

Communication is key. Work things out or walk away.

“I can’t control your behavior; nor do I want that burden… but I will not apologize for refusing to be disrespected, to be lied to, or to be mistreated. I have standards; step up or step out.” — Steve Maraboli

Other

37. Your TV And Couch

Make your environment uncomfortable so you can focus on the things that matter.

38. Waiting For Things You Don’t Need To

Coffee machine? A traffic light when there are other options? A file upload? Just do something else!

39. Things That Don’t Work Towards Your Goals

Question the things you do. Better yet, question it before you start it.

“If it’s not a Hell Yeah!, it’s a no” — Derek Sivers

40. Comparing Apples To Oranges

Don’t waste time comparing things that don’t compare. It’s it’s quantified or qualified using a different set of attributes, it’s not the same thing!

41. Your Cellphone

Top productive people set their phones on Airplane mode for most of the day. For me, it has become a brick of sorts.

“Technology can be our best friend, and technology can also be the biggest party pooper of our lives. It interrupts our own story, interrupts our ability to have a thought or a daydream, to imagine something wonderful, because we’re too busy bridging the walk from the cafeteria back to the office on the cell phone.” — Steven Spielberg

Conclusion

Feel like saying “no” now?

You can start right away!

Reading this article on your cellphone? Just toss it! Make sure to clap 👏👏👏 (up to 50 times) first though!

Learning to say “no” is a skill. Practice it. Master it. Become who you want to become.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading and sharing ! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/41-things-you-should-say-no-to-to-become-the-person-you-want-to-be-in-life-and-business-b5c7832c3b36

Learn How To Be Honest And Seek Brutal Honesty

When someone asks you for your opinion on something, what’s your go-to answer?

Do you tell them what you think, or what they want to hear?

Why do you do that?

Does it help you? Does it help them?

Most likely that depends on circumstances and with whom as well. We’re obviously less prone to giving our honest opinion to people who can’t handle it. And we don’t want to beat someone who’s already down.

Be Honest With Others

The truth is, you’re almost always a better friend when you tell the other person the brutal truth. And brutal doesn’t have to be harsh. In fact, it shouldn’t be harsh. Harsh is for trolls. It just means pointing out the reality of things, even when it’s hard for them to hear it.

Here’s a recent example from an honest friend of mine:

“Danny, your trailer for Soul Reaper is not good. I see areas of improvements in x, y and z. I disconnected after watching 10 seconds. Two minutes is too long.”.

This is helpful, not hurtful.

I had spent a good amount of time work on the trailer, so a lot of people didn’t dare tell me the problems with it in fear of hurting me.

What hurts more is releasing a shitty trailer that would attract no players to the game.

My bond with that friend grew stronger. I know I can trust him. And trust my friends, is one of the greatest attribute of a good friendship!

Be Honest With Yourself

If you thought being honest with others was hard, it’s nothing compared to being honest with yourself.

The truth is, we are constantly lying to ourselves, unwillingly or not.

Sometimes we think we’re better than we really are, and for most people I think, we think we’re not as good as we really are.

Which camp are you in?

For most things I think I’m better than I really am. But for things that are new to me, like writing and photography, I think I’m not as good as I really am.

The problem is we’re not static. We change constantly. Every day.

We change so fast that we don’t have time to fact-check who we are today, because we are indeed not who we were yesterday.

“Every next level of your life will demand a different you.” — Leonardo DiCaprio

Journaling For Honesty

This month I picked up journaling as one of the 3 skills I learn every month. I’m following Benjamin P. Hardy’s course on Journaling.

By doing it on a daily basis, you reach a new level of awareness, about yourself and other people around you.

And I’ll be honest with you, I thought it would be a dumb exercise. I thought I’d have nothing to write and there’s no way I’d continue with that. I was so wrong!

It’s such a relieving experience to put everything down on paper. That, combined with meditation, is the best mental relief I’ve had in ages.

When journaling, I question everything. Why? Why? Why? Ask why 7 times and you’ll know the truth.

You’ll become more honest with yourself, and in return, you’ll understand the value of brutal honesty, both for yourself, but with people you care about.

Conclusion

Being honest is not a personality trait, it’s a skill. Practice it. Start with yourself. Journal every day.

Understand that you change. Take a moment to grasp who you are now, not who you were yesterday. Do the same for people you care about.

Honesty is an important skill in relationships, business, self-esteem etc. Invest in it and your life will be that much better.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading and sharing ! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/learn-how-to-be-honest-and-seek-brutal-honesty-3beb6e67e237

Poco A Poco — How To Build Lasting Momentum

Writing wisdom says to not give the answer in the headline. Well, I just did.

Little by little

Not the biggest revelation I know, but that’s exactly why it works and why no one can apply it.

For some reason, we humans just try to overcomplicate everything. Everything.

Think about a problem you had which you tried to find a solution for.

How simple was the solution? How much effort did it take? Did you execute on it?

I’m sure you didn’t have to think too hard to find a problem you overthought.

Well, I’m telling you straight: building momentum is all about Doing. Little by little. Everyday. ¡Poco a poco!

It’s that simple. Don’t overthink it.

I build so much momentum that not persevering is actually more difficult than procrastinating.

And this all starts with small increments. Common wisdom says 1% improvement everyday. Qualify and quantify everything, down to the little details. That way, it’s nearly impossible to not to notice gains or progress towards a goal.

How Can I Execute Every Day?

In Zdravko’s Ultimate Productivity Cheat Sheet, he explains what he calls the X Method.

At its most basic, it’s just marking down that you did your habit on a calendar with a big fat ‘X’.

Sounds a little childish I know.

Back when I was a kid, I would get a sun sticker on my calendar if I brushed my teeth in the morning and at night. Sounds dumb, but I’ve never looked back on my teeth brushing.

If you want a more tech-y version of that, try out the Way Of Life app, which was featured on The Tim Ferriss Show, amongst other places. I had the chance to get a glimpse of the next version coming out soon, and it’s really really good!

How Do I Make Momentum Last?

True momentum really makes you unstoppable.

Much like in my story above, this morning, I was out of bed at 6:20am. Today is a Sunday. No alarm. As much as I try to tell myself to stay in bed, I’m already out by the time I finish my thought.

It’s that powerful.

I’ve had/felt this momentum for at least 5 months now. And it all began when I decided I would learn 3 new skills every month.

It really is as insane as it sounds, but the more obsessed you are with your goals, and the more frequently you achieve them, the high you get is unfathomable.

Sir Richard Branson said: “Get high on life”. I think that’s what he meant.

“There’s no talent here. This is hard work. This is obsession. Talent does not exist.” — Conor McGregor

Everyone can achieve lasting momentum.

Conclusion

Break everything down. Be consistent. Do. Little by little.

Don’t cheat. Act. Measure. Achieve. Build momentum.

Always aim for more. Aim freaking high. Take criticizing. Let it be your fuel to achieve more better things.

Be obsessed. Research. Know your goals. Execute.

Rinse and repeat.

You can do this!

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/poco-a-poco-how-to-build-lasting-momentum-1dec9fd219a4

41 Short And Powerful Quotes To Make You Feel Unstoppable

Over the course of my first 30 days writing on Medium, I noticed that, with reason, what gets highlighted the most are powerful quotes from wise and/or “successful” people.

As such, I’ve accumulated lots of them during that period. This article contains some of the most powerful ones I’ve collected.

Let these strong quotes inspire you; motivate you to be what you want to be; motivate you to dare act, change, and think differently.

Feel the power of these quotes and become unstoppable.

Success

“Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” — Robert F.Kennedy

“There’s a six-word formula for success: Think things through, then follow through.” — Eddie Rickenbacker

“Success means doing the best we can with what we have. Success is the doing, not the getting; in the trying, not the triumph. Success is a personal standard, reaching for the highest that is in us, becoming all that we can be.” — Zig Ziglar

‘Be so good they can’t ignore you.’ — Steve Martin

“Your level of success will rarely exceed your level of personal development, because success is something you attract by the person you become.” — Hal Elrod

“Success is not to be pursued; it is to be attracted by the person you become.” — Jim Rohn

Learning

“Live life as if this will be your last day; Learn as if you will live forever.” — Mahatma Gandhi

“The person who can learn from everything will beat out the person who judges harshly who and what to learn from.” — James Altucher

“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” — Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

“The future belongs to those who learn more skills and combine them in creative ways.” ― Robert Greene, Mastery

“Approach everything with an open mind, with a learning mind. You will never stop learning as long as you keep the mindset that everything works, because everything does work. There’s a time and a place for every single move. If you work on it enough, it will work.” — Conor McGregor

“If your why is strong enough you will figure out how!” — Bill Walsh

“Once you’ve taken a few punches and realise you’re not made of glass, you don’t feel alive unless you’re pushing yourself as far as you can go.” Green Street Hooligans

“Become a millionaire not for the million dollars, but for what it will make of you to achieve it.” — Jim Rohn

Being/Becoming Different

“To achieve what you have not, you must become what you are not. You have to grow into your goals.” — Darren Hardy

“The day before something is a breakthrough, it’s a crazy idea” — Peter Diamandis

“Who you are today is not who you have to be tomorrow.” — Zdravko Cvijetic

“The more you seek the uncomfortable, the more you will become comfortable.” — Conor McGregor

“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are unwilling to do.” — Darren Hardy

“If you want to live an exceptional and extraordinary life, you have to give up many of the things that are part of a normal one.” — Srinivas Rao

“Every next level of your life will demand a different you.” — Leonardo DiCaprio

Self-Awareness

“When the student is ready the teacher will appear.” — Buddha

“The thing about truth is, not a lot of people can handle it.” — Conor McGregor

“The trouble is, you think you have time” — Jack Kornfield

“Defeat is the secret ingredient to success. What defines us is how we rise after falling.” — Conor McGregor

“What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create.” — Buddha

“The moment you accept total responsibility for EVERYTHING in your life is the day you claim the power the change ANYTHING in your life.” -Hal Elrod

“Don’t wish it was easier wish you were better. Don’t wish for less problems wish for more skills. Don’t wish for less challenge wish for more wisdom.” — Jim Rohn

Productivity

“What gets measured gets managed.” — Peter Drucker

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” — Mae West

“Shipping beats perfection.” — Khan Academy’s Development Mantra

“There’s no talent here. This is hard work. This is obsession. Talent does not exist.” — Conor McGregor

“Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice, and discipline.” — Jim Collins

“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” — Charles Dickens

“Small, seemingly inconsistent steps completed consistently over time will create a radical difference.” — Darren Hardy

Positivity

“I have never encountered a winner that held hate towards something.” — Conor McGregor

“Excellence is not a skill. Excellence is an attitude.” — Conor McGregor

“Stay away from negative people. They have a problem for every solution.” — Albert Einstein

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” — Maya Angelou

“Nothing good ever comes from worrying or sitting there feeling sorry for yourself. Keep positive and keep pushing on and things will turn good.” — Conor McGregor

“At the end of the day, you’ve gotta feel some way. So why not feel unbeatable? Why not feel untouchable?” — Conor McGregor

Feeling Inspired?

Bookmark this article and refer to it regularly. I know I will.

Feel free to share some of your favourite quotes in the comments below.

Thanks for reading and sharing ! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/41-short-and-powerful-quotes-to-make-you-feel-unstoppable-65fb069510d6

There Are Those Who Do It For The Money, Then There Are Those Who Do It For…

  • love;

  • compassion;

  • happiness;

  • justice;

  • fun; or for

  • any other reason.

(This story is very much a personal and collective reflection on motivation for doing things. I do not have answers, mostly because there is no one answer on the topic. Happy to hear about what motivates you to do things in the comments!)

On Doing It For The Money

There are those who do it for the money:

The year I turned 26, as the head of my own brokerage firm, I made $49 million, which really pissed me off because it was three shy of a million a week.” Jordan Belfort

“Let me tell you something. There’s no nobility in poverty. I’ve been a poor man, and I’ve been a rich man. And I choose rich every fucking time. “Jordan Belfort

“Listen! We’re not just doing this for the money! We’re doing this for a S*** LOAD of money!” — Bill Pullman

On Not Doing It For The Money

“I am not doing it just for the money or for you. I am doing it for me.” — Keith Richards

The real reward for doing your best work is not for the money you make but the leader you become. — Robin Sharma

For some strange reason, money has never been the object of my desires. I personally never do anything for money.

Money comes to me not because I work for it, but because I do things I care about. When I put my heart into something, I obsess over doing it right. About doing it as well as I can possibly do it.

Money, it turns out, is very much a side-effect of “success” in doing what I care about.

And I’m not the only one who thinks that.

A prime example of that is Warren Buffett. He has a 75.6 billion net worth. He’s the second richest man in the world, after Bill Gates. Warren never cared for money. Strange thing to say for the world’s most successful investor of all times and second richest person in the world. He still lives in the same house he bought in 1958 and drives the same car for years.

The world’s richest person, Bill Gates, gives a lot of his fortune to his foundation: The Bill And Melinda Gates Foundation. When he co-founded Microsoft, he didn’t do it for the money. He just believed in democratizing the use of computers for everyone, much like Steve Jobs at Apple.

If the two richest people in the world don’t care for money, why should we?

Look around you. Look at people who have found success in what they do.

Did they do it for the money?

What did they do it for?

On Doing It For Other Reasons

“Love what you do, not the love you get from doing it.” — Tablo

“It is not necessarily a money thing for me. I am passionate about fighting. Fighting is what I love to do. I will continue to do it as long as I am healthy and willing to put in the work that it takes to do.” — Conor McGregor

“I was just doing it for the lulz” — South Park

At the risk of sounding contradictory, I find that there’s no reason that’s better than another.

A lot of the times it’s circumstantial. In some situations, doing for justice or for fun may be the right approach for you. And an approach that is right for you doesn’t mean it’s right for others.

After traveling the world for a year, I came back with a sense of renewed purpose, in many areas of my life.

The overall theme was that I started appreciating doing good in the world. Not just thinking about me, but thinking about people around me, but more specifically for people “in need”.

I do it because I like to do it. I never ask for money. I never ask for anything in return.

When I do something, I consciously or unconsciously think about my motivations to do it.

The general theme for me revolves around compassion.

Conclusion

Everyone has their own personal motivations to do things they do. In business, a lot of people aim for money. Is that right? Is that wrong? It depends on perspective. I personally side with Warren Buffett and Bill Gates on this one.

What about you?

What motivates you to do what you do?

If you’re motivated by money, how is it working out for you?

If you’re not motivated by money, how is it working out for you?

Thanks for reading and sharing your opinion! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/@danny_forest/there-are-those-who-do-it-for-the-money-then-there-are-those-who-do-it-for-719f1fb64957

Let’s All Learn This Lesson From Arnold Schwarzenegger

HULTON ARCHIVE / STRINGER / GETTY

HULTON ARCHIVE / STRINGER / GETTY

Arnold’s story is an amazing one. If you haven’t read his biography: “Total Recall: My Unbelievable True Life Story”, add it to your list. There’s something for everyone and it’s incredibly inspiring.

Of all the things he did, here’s where I think I learned the most valuable lesson:

“I knew if I exposed only my better body parts — my arms, chest, or deltoids — all I’d get from my peers would be wonderful comments and I’d soon forget about my horrid lower legs, so I continued to wear the cutaway sweatpants that invited ego-bruising pain … and it worked. I trained them first every workout, and very often I did a few sets at the end of my workout.” — Arnold Schwarzenegger.

How often do we expose our weaknesses?

Very rarely.

I have really small legs for a man. I’ve always been ashamed of them. In fact, I was teased for it when I was younger. For a long time I would not wear shorts because of that. I didn’t want to expose them. I didn’t want to expose this weakness.

I was afraid of judgement from other people. I still am actually. Aren’t we all?

But by exposing my legs at the gym now, I am so much more motivated to work them out. It’s very hard for me. I’ve got weak legs. But at the gym, no one is judging me for it. They get it. They see that I’m working on my weakness and respect that.

I just mentioned one of my body weakness, like Arnold, but this really applies to everything, not just the body. It can be a skill you can’t pick up, a fear you have, in business, at work, anything really. I can hardly ride a bicycle. I’m afraid of heights. I’m afraid of drowning, etc.

Exposing your weaknesses is incredibly hard to do. It’s made a little easier by having more self-confidence. But, there’s a key lesson here: expose your weaknesses in the right environment.

I prefer not to expose my legs outside the gym. Out of context, people will judge me negatively for it.

Unless you have Arnold’s confidence, I suggest you do that same. Expose your weaknesses in environment where people will be more open to seeing your weakness. And gradually expand that environment.

For me, I’ve grown my legs considerably this month. They’re still really small, but less so than before. Little by little, I’m becoming less ashamed of them.

If I didn’t expose on my legs, chances are I would have worked mostly on my arms, where I have a clear strength.

So let’s all learn from Arnold!

A Little Exercise

What are your weaknesses?

How do you hide them?

How do you expose them?

What are you doing towards them?

Let’s help each other out. Feeling brave? Post in the comments. You’ll see it feels good to let it out there, in a non-judgemental environment.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading and sharing! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/lets-all-learn-this-lesson-from-arnold-schwarzenegger-75d53c968c94

You Are, Or Will Become What you Read

This morning I woke up to a really nice message from a reader of this story I wrote: Stop Being What You Can, Start Being What You Want. Here’s part of it:

“[…] I wasn’t courageous enough and there’s too much negativity and pessimism from my family and society. However, this year is different. After reading many inspiring stories like yours and getting so sick of this mediocre life, I’ve decided to make the most crazy change ever.” — Introvert Vicky

That spoke to me greatly.

If you’re reading this, I’m sure it’s speaking to you too.

How many times have we stopped doing what we really wanted to do because it was less conventional or frown upon by people around us?

We can change that!

And Vicky might not know it, but she’s on the right track here. Let me emphasize a part of her message that I think proves she’s on the right track:

After reading many inspiring stories like yours […]

Yesterday I gave a talk at the co-working space I work from. It was about Life and Work Productivity Hacks. At one point in the presentation, I explained that I didn’t always used to be productive and driven like I am now.

And then I got a follow-up question asking me “How” I became driven like that, and I wasn’t sure what to answer.

I didn’t consciously become driven. I didn’t wake up one morning and thought to myself: “Okay, starting today, I’ll have all the motivation in the world to do anything I want”. I didn’t plan for it. That would never have worked. No one’s that great.

After reading Vicky’s message this morning, things became clearer. I’ve been reading a lot of awesome stories from other writers here on Medium. Basically every day for the past 6 months. This motivated me to consciously learn 3 new skills every month.

It turns out, I became everything I’ve been reading for the past 6 months.

So I want to apply what I’m preaching, and thanking the writers who inspired me to be what I am today:

A big thank you to the following writers I’ve been following and reading frequently:

Also a big thank you to the following publications for which I’m either reading and/or writing for:

Let them inspire you.

Learn from them.

Before you know it, you will be the person they talk about in their stories.

You will have changed your life for what you really want to be.

Conclusion

Whether this is the first story you read here or you’ve been reading for a while, let these incredible writers inspire you. Keep reading. You’ll see repeating patterns but told from very different perspectives. You’ll share stories with them. You will build trust in them, but most importantly, trust in yourself.

Keep reading what inspires you and you will become inspiring yourself.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/you-are-or-will-become-what-you-read-e152d7a4d4e0

Stop Doing What You Can, Start Doing What You Want

How many things have you done in life simply because you could?

Now how many things have you done in life that you really wanted to do?

I bet you did more things that you could than things that you wanted. Maybe it started as a “want”, but ended up as a “can”.

“Just because you can? Nah, it’s not a good enough reason to do something. Even when it means having more, be discerning, choose it, because you want it, do it because you want to.” — Matthew McConaughey

The Turning Point For Me

Up to a little over two years ago, I was following a more traditional way of life.

I had a “9–5” job that I was good at and liked. But even though it was “9–5”, I was tired after work. I didn’t want to do anything. I would play video games mostly. I called this research, because that’s what I do for a living.

Programming for me is something I do well. I can do it. I enjoy it too, but back then I didn’t do it for projects I was passionate about.

Now, what I really wanted to do was just leave everything behind and travel with my wife, without worrying about making money.

A few months after discussing it, we did it: we traveled around the world.

For a full year, it was all about doing what I wanted, not what I could. I wanted to:

  • Experience India;

  • Go to wedding celebrations in other cultures;

  • Meet inspiring locals all around the world;

  • Finish building a video game I had started on my own;

  • Do volunteer work globally;

  • and more.

Since then, I try everything I want to do. Climbing — done. Surfing — done. Taking photo professionally — done. Writing — done. Make my own games — done. Live as a nomad — done.

It doesn’t mean I don’t do things I can anymore. It just means I do a whole lot more things I want to do.

Why Is It Better?

I’m more passionate and motivated for it. I’m 10x more productive because I work on things I want to work on, wherever and whenever I want to.

I’m more “successful” because I achieve so much more than if I did something I didn’t want to do. Waking up at 5:45am is not even difficult anymore. I look at the time not because I’m bored, but because I dread that the day will end and I will not have done enough. But then again, I don’t have time to look at the time, because I’m busy doing things I like.

What If I Can’t Do What I Want?

Who says you can’t? Time? Responsibilities? Others?

You can always make time. Change priorities. Wake up earlier. Change your environment. Reduce your commute time.

Responsibilities are trickier, but you don’t have to do EVERYTHING you want. Gradually increase them with the little things. Be clever. Think outside the box and you’ll figure out how to do things you want while still taking care or your responsibilities.

As for others, unless you consider them mentors, don’t listen to them. Just do it. You’ll lose friends, but you’ll make new better ones. Sounds terrible I know, but it’s a price to pay to have a better quality of life.

Conclusion

Write down the list of things you do because you can.

Now write down the list of things you do because you want.

What’s the ratio?

How do you turn that around?

Be daring enough to do what you want.

You can do this!

Thanks for reading! :)

First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/stop-doing-what-you-can-start-doing-what-you-want-ec8cb4786c70