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 #1

Be clear about what you value in life


Do you value health over success? Family over career? Business over friendship? Spirituality over social life? What are your values?

Most people don’t have a clue.

As a result they live wishy-washy lives, devoid of clear direction and power.  As Confucius once said, ‘He who aims at nothing... is sure to hit it!’

Take half an hour to think about these areas of your life, and then list them in order of importance: Business, family life, social life, health, spirituality. Which is number one in importance? Which is number five? Once you’ve worked out what you value most, ask yourself whether you are currently living your life in accordance with that values ladder.

If not, change your life.

Living a life according to your values is truly one of the great secrets to happiness.

 

 #2

Get out of the office early and work at home more often


The average office worker is scared to leave the office. Terrified that the boss might think they’re lazy, they stay at their desks even if they have little to do. Eradicate that attitude from this moment onwards.


The only thing that matters is your performance, not how many hours you worked, or where you worked. If your work is done, leave, and give yourself a well-earned rest.

 

Perhaps the greatest swimmer in history, Mark Spitz, attributed much of his success to his ability to make the most of his time off between swimming events, and truly relax.


Likewise if you work better at home, work often at home. Do what gets results, not just what looks good to the corporate lemmings.

 

 

 #3

Understand the awesome power of persistence.


Want to know the single most important reason that most people don’t achieve their dreams? . . . . they give up too early.


Most people simply don’t realise that consistent failure is a necessary component to achieving spectacular success. If you’re not failing regularly you’re either aiming too low, or not pushing yourself.


Colonel Sanders was turned down 1009 times before one restaurant bought his chicken recipe.
Walt Disney got 203 rejections from banks until one said yes to financing Disneyland.


Thomas Edison is said to have had over 10,000 separate experiments before he succeeded in creating the electric light bulb.

 

The secret to success is persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence, persistence!


But make sure it’s intelligent persistence – vary your methods, be flexible, think laterally. Then keep on going and going until finally success eventually gives in and gives you what you rightly deserve.

 

 

 #4

Write Thank You notes daily


Ever received a nice Thank You note? It makes you feel terrific, doesn’t it? One of the reasons it does is that we receive such notes so rarely.


Don’t be like most people and send them once or twice a year. Send them any chance you get and you’ll make a favourable impact on hundreds of people each year.

 

People rarely forget those who take the time to say thank you.

 

 

 #5

Deliver what you promise


'I'll ring you tomorrow.’ ‘I’ll meet you at six o'clock.’ ‘I’ll have that report finished by Friday.’

 

Little promises like these are made all the time and very often not kept. But even though they seem like minor things, powerful people fulfil their little promises, and I’ll tell you why:

 

They understand that a person’s word is crucial to their reputation, and if what they promise they always deliver (no matter how small), word gets around that that person can be trusted. And trustworthiness is a much valued personality trait.

 

The trick is to promise a lot less, then try to exceed what you promised.

 

 

 #6

Ask people’s opinions often


There are two reasons why this simple technique is very powerful.

The first and most obvious one is that when you bother to ask people what they think, you often hear angles on things you may not have considered yourself.

 

The second and perhaps the most important reason is that it makes the people you ask feel respected. One of the great lessons of life is to realise that more than money, business people want respect. (Indeed their acquisition of wealth or material possessions is primarily just to gain more respect from other people.)

 

Every time you ask somebody’s opinion you make them feel they’re included, and what they think is worth hearing. In other words, you respect them.

 

 

 #7

Find out all your friends’ and business associates’ birthdays


Even important people often only get a few cards on their birthday.

 

If you can take the time to make a list of clients’ birthdays and send them a card each year, they’ll remember you fondly for life.

 

Same with your friends. There’s hardly a person in the world who doesn’t feel warm inside when they get a nice birthday card with some heartfelt words.

 

Big shot or small player, young or old, everyone loves to be loved.

 

 

 #8

Don’t lie


The great Persian mystic and renowned psychologist, Dr Javad Nurbakhsh, once said that a condition of good mental health and contentment is that you be who you say you are.

 

The moment you start lying, you begin to have something to hide, and all sorts of mental weaknesses begin to develop from this inconsistency.

 

Lying not only weakens your character, but surprisingly often it’s ineffective as a tactic, simply because lies often get caught out – thereby considerably damaging the reputation of the liar.

Be one of the minority who always tells the truth. Not only will you feel better about yourself, but people will feel better about you.

 

When everyone knows a person always tells the truth, what they do say has great power and weight.

 

 

 #9

Develop a strong self image


The vast majority of people do no work on developing a healthy self image. Indeed many people see themselves generally as failures at life.

 

In his classic book Psycho Cybernetics, Dr Maxwell Maltz clearly showed that our self image usually dictates our level of success.

 

Each time you look in the mirror, affirm to yourself that you are talented, and do deserve success. Take control of your self image from this moment onwards, and reap the benefits for the rest of your life.

 

 

 #10

Aim to be the best in the world at what you do


Am I crazy? What are the chances of you ever being the best in the world at something? Pretty darn small.

 

But unless you aim for greatness, you never achieve above mediocrity.

 

Always be thinking, ‘What would the best' in the world do in this situation?’, and you’ll be amazed at the progress you make.

 

Forget where you are now, keep thinking about where you’d like to be. Strange as it may seem, if you aim sincerely to be the number one in the world at something, many seemingly unrelated areas of your life will also improve.

 

Uncommon Sense

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