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Sunday, 30 June 2013

9 Daily Habits That Will Make You Happier

9 Daily Habits That Will Make You Happier

These minor changes in your daily routine will make a major difference in your life and career.


Happiness is the only true measure of personal success. Making other people happy is the highest expression of success, but it's almost impossible to make others happy if you're not happy yourself.

With that in mind, here are nine small changes that you can make to your daily routine that, if you're like most people, will immediately increase the amount of happiness in your life:

1. Start each day with expectation.

If there's any big truth about life, it's that it usually lives up to (or down to) your expectations. Therefore, when you rise from bed, make your first thought: "something wonderful is going to happen today." Guess what? You're probably right.

2. Take time to plan and prioritize.

The most common source of stress is the perception that you've got too much work to do.  Rather than obsess about it, pick one thing that, if you get it done today, will move you closer to your highest goal and purpose in life. Then do that first.

3. Give a gift to everyone you meet.

I'm not talking about a formal, wrapped-up present. Your gift can be your smile, a word of thanks or encouragement, a gesture of politeness, even a friendly nod. And never pass beggars without leaving them something. Peace of mind is worth the spare change.

4. Deflect partisan conversations.

Arguments about politics and religion never have a "right" answer but they definitely get people all riled up over things they can't control. When such topics surface, bow out by saying something like: "Thinking about that stuff makes my head hurt."

5. Assume people have good intentions.

Since you can't read minds, you don't really know the "why" behind the "what" that people do. Imputing evil motives to other people's weird behaviors adds extra misery to life, while assuming good intentions leaves you open to reconciliation.

6. Eat high quality food slowly.

Sometimes we can't avoid scarfing something quick to keep us up and running. Even so, at least once a day try to eat something really delicious, like a small chunk of fine cheese or an imported chocolate. Focus on it; taste it; savor it.

7. Let go of your results.

The big enemy of happiness is worry, which comes from focusing on events that are outside your control. Once you've taken action, there's usually nothing more you can do. Focus on the job at hand rather than some weird fantasy of what might happen.

8. Turn off "background" TV.

Many households leave their TVs on as "background noise" while they're doing other things. The entire point of broadcast TV is to make you dissatisfied with your life so that you'll buy more stuff. Why subliminally program yourself to be a mindless consumer?

9. End each day with gratitude.

Just before you go to bed, write down at least one wonderful thing that happened. It might be something as small as a making a child laugh or something as huge as a million dollar deal. Whatever it is, be grateful for that day because it will never come again.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Five Master Steps for Planning an Extraordinary Life

planning photo illustration

Most people are stressed because they’re keeping all the things they need to do in their heads. So they buy planners or download apps to get organized, and it’s a “eureka” experience because the simple action of capturing to-dos relieves stress initially.

But without a true system, a process of turning action items into the results you desire, the stress will ultimately return. To create a fulfilled life in which you’re achieving your goals, you’ll need the five master steps of planning:

Step 1: Capture Your Ideas, Wants and Dreams

Document the ideas, meetings, communications and results that need to be accomplished. In this step, you’re simply getting the ideas out of your head and onto paper (or into your computer or mobile device) quickly. When you first do this, it feels good. But if you stop here, you’ll just end up with a large to-do list—and stress will start to build up.

Step 2: Create a Results-Focused, Purpose-Driven, Massive Action Plan (RPM)

To create an RPM plan, ask and answer these questions:
1) What do I want? What’s my outcome? What’s the specific result I’m after?
2) Why do I want it? What’s my purpose?
3) What’s my massive action plan to get it done?

The secret to effective planning is to create the focus and emotions that produce results by organizing your objectives into specific results. This is your RPM plan. You’ll likely generate a small set of results you’re committed to achieve for the day or week. Next, take the items on your to-do list and organize them underneath each result (e.g. outcomes related to your health, business, family, etc.). Your focus will shift from the many action items you need to do to the four to six results that you’re committed to achieve.

Step 3: Commit

Now create blocks of time to work on specific outcomes. You might say, “7–8 AM, I’m working on the result of creating health. 9 AM–noon I’m working on the result of increasing my sales 5%.” This is key: If you don’t block out time for these things first, other distractions will take over.

Step 4: Schedule

It’s only after you’ve committed blocks of time to your important results that you should schedule things that must happen at a specific time, like meetings, classes, doctor appointments, etc.

Step 5: Complete, Measure and Celebrate

Now it’s time to take action: Complete the tasks needed to achieve your result, measure whether you’re on track, and celebrate your outcome. (If you don’t celebrate your results, you’ll lose the motivation to keep following through.) Instead of focusing on what you did today, focus on what you achieved!

For more strategies and tools to maximize your time, visit

“What’s talked about is a dream. What’s envisioned is exciting. What’s planned becomes possible. What’s scheduled is real.”
—Anthony Robbins