The importance of change and the opportunities it brings

Today, dear reader, I’d like to explore the importance of change to a business and the opportunities it brings. For the fleet-footed entrepreneur, opportunity is synonymous with change. If that isn’t obvious, trust me, it’s true. And that’s why it’s important to embrace change.

1. Change is inevitable:

As the old saying goes, change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

We cannot avoid change, quite simply, because it’s going to happen whether we like it or not. Trying to stop it is like trying to hold back the tide. It cannot be done. Change is simply a force of nature.

However, if you hate change, don’t worry because you’re not alone. Most people hate change.

Just when we think we have everything under control, a significant change happens and suddenly we’re scrambling to get ourselves back to equilibrium. It makes life seem like a giant game of Snakes and Ladders, doesn’t it?

2. Fear of change is natural:

Actually feeling uncomfortable when faced with change is both rational and natural because one of the most basic human needs is the need to feel secure. Change is an uncomfortable experience because it makes us feel insecure.

However, we must control any fear we have about it and we must have the courage to do whatever is necessary to ensure that we respond appropriately as the winds of change start blowing around us.

3. Businesses can be fragile:

Change can affect a business in many ways, given that plenty of things can change for a business over time.

For instance, consumers’ needs, wants, and expectations will change over time, as will technology; markets, competition, and regulations. And of course, let’s not forget taxation. Governments are constantly tinkering with taxation, as their need for money increases.

Therefore, business owners and executives must be on their guard constantly, anticipating change and how it might affect their business.

Whether you’re an owner, an executive or just an employee, if you’re involved with a business then you cannot afford to become too complacent.

Ignore change and it’ll kill your business quicker than you might imagine. It can kill your career, too. Businesses can be fragile if they’re exposed suddenly to the harsh reality of change.

4. Change on an industrial scale:

It’s easy to think that major corporations that dominate whole industries are immune from the impact that change can bring. Unfortunately, this isn’t so.

Consider, for instance, the computer industry.

IBM was once the behemoth of that industry. The very name was synonymous with everything that was best in the information technology (IT) sector, globally. So glowing was their reputation that there was an old saying universally accepted in business, “No one ever got fired for buying IBM.

They were Big Blue, second to no one.

However, their size and reputation didn’t stop them from almost paying a heavy price for failing to anticipate changing IT trends.

For years, IBM favoured large centralised computer installations that filled whole buildings. And IBM didn’t see any reason to do anything differently, as they were in the business of supplying these and making good money from them.

Neither did they believe that many people would actually need computers. As recently as 1943 Thomas Watson, then Chairman of IBM said, “I think there’s a world market for maybe five computers.

However, IBM’s lack of foresight didn’t end there.

Having introduced what we now call the PC to the market in 1982, they didn’t believe it had any real future. Apparently, their original forecast for global sales for the PC was just 25,000 units, worldwide.

IBM didn’t want PCs to sell because they saw centralised corporate computer systems as where the real money was. Their failure to see the potential of the PC allowed Microsoft to move in and become a dominant player at IBM’s expense.

Failure to recognize changing trends and how they would affect the demand for computers and the way computers were going to be used had almost catastrophic consequences for IBM.

To be fair, they did manage to adapt eventually, but not before their business came dangerously close to collapse. And to this day, they do not dominate their industry in the way they once did.

5. Heavyweights no more:

Another good example of a dominant industry player failing to recognise the winds of change was Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).

If you’re not familiar with that name, dear reader, they were the leading supplier of what was then known as the mini-computer back in the late 1970s.

However, it seems DEC allowed its dominant industry position to cloud its judgment because back in 1977, Ken Olson, then President, Chairman, and founder of DEC observed, “There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.

Where is DEC now?

They’re nothing more than a footnote in the history of digital technology. Few people, other than old computer industry hands, will even remember the name.

And yet the demand for computer technology products is greater than it has ever been. Every household has several of them in the form of desktops, laptops, and, in particular, tablets and smartphones.

Today, the computer industry is dominated by companies like Microsoft, Apple, and Google. None of these companies even existed when Ken Olson made his unfortunate comment in 1977.

Another good example is Kodak, once the dominant player in the photographic products industry. As recently as 1976, Kodak commanded 90% of film sales and 85% of camera sales in the United States. Where are they now? Certainly, nothing like the company they once were, that’s for sure.

6. Change brings opportunity:

Set aside the fear of change, and you’ll see that it’s not necessarily a bad thing, because it generates opportunities for the fleet-footed. So there’s a positive dimension to change as well.

If it’s embraced, then opportunities are always there for the taking.

Just think about it for a second. If change didn’t happen, we’d all still be living in caves and riding around on donkeys.

Most companies, particularly large corporations, are usually far too slow in responding to change. However, that offers plenty of scope for smaller, faster, and more flexible businesses to move in and relieve the big boys of their lunch.

So change is a positive dynamic.

7. See change positively:

Let’s face it if everything always remained the same, then most of the things we enjoy and take for granted today wouldn’t exist.

In developed countries, we enjoy a standard of living that would have been beyond the imagination of people even a century ago. Think about that statement for a second; everything we now take for granted today once didn’t exist.

The point is that we ignore change at our peril, particularly in business.

So it’s better to embrace change positively than to ignore it.

Yes, of course, it feels uncomfortable, but we all get used to changes in the fullness of time.

If change is going to happen anyway, then we might as well see what’s in it for us, surely?

If we’re in business, or indeed, as people, we should always be constantly thinking about how we can exploit change to our advantage. How can we seize the opportunities that will come along as a natural consequence of change?

To exploit change, we need to become trend-watchers. And not just single trends.

We need to be watching every trend that might have an impact on ourselves and our businesses.

We must consider how those trends might come together to create a perfect storm, the winds of which might do us harm or become the wind beneath our wings.

Whether the consequences are good or bad, we must always be ready for them.

9. Conclusion:

Successful people are adept at exploiting opportunities brought about by change.

Change is synonymous with opportunity, it’s that simple.

Never fear change, you must embrace it.

If success is your aim, then change can be your friend.

However, never underestimate the harm change can do, should you become too complacent.

Change can be a force for good, but equally, it can be a dangerous force for the unwary.

When you think of change, think positively, but think defensively too.

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Copyright © Mann Island Media Limited 2024. All rights reserved.

Life is short: Here’s what’s important to you today

Life is short:

You’ll often hear people talk about the importance of money in terms of living life in the modern age.

Let’s be honest, it’s difficult to live without money today, is it not? Certainly, it’s up there with oxygen and water for sustaining life.

Nevertheless, we must also remember that life is short. And sadly for some people, it’s very short indeed.

So, while money’s important, it’s not an ideal means for measuring success, is it? Not real success in life anyway.

Misplaced priorities:

In the modern age, it’s easy to become obsessed with money.

However, the accumulation of money for its own sake should never be the underlying motive that drives us, surely? That can only lead to a life of misplaced priorities, I think.

If your approach to life includes an obsession with money, then you’ll be doomed to disappointment, and I think you’ll realise that eventually.

One day you’ll look back and wish you’d spent a bit more time with family, friends, and loved ones, of that I’m quite sure.

So what would be an ideal measure of success?

A measure of success:

For me, a better measure of success is whether we’re feeling fulfilled by what we’re doing.

If our work is something we’d do as a hobby if we couldn’t get paid for it then that’s a better way of gauging success. As the legendary investor, Warren Buffett once said, “Look for a job that you’d take if you didn’t need a job.”

A sense of purpose and work that is fulfilling and truly absorbing is a much less stressful way of living.

Enjoy what you do:

Enjoy what you do and do what you enjoy, if you possibly can.

If you enjoy what you do, you’ll do it well, and the money will follow anyway. If you do your work exceptionally well, then people will notice. And once you get noticed, you’re on your way to genuine success.

Never be driven by money alone.

Never accept a job simply because it’s well paid.

It’s nice to have a good salary, of course.

However, once you get used to the money, you still have to spend a third of your life doing the work for which you’re being paid well.

And doing work you don’t enjoy is a significant price to pay in terms of your emotions, stress levels, and the potential impact it will have on your health.

Time is precious:

If life’s short, then our time is very precious, surely?

What’s the point of working every hour you’ve got just to become rich, only to die suddenly of a heart attack having had no time to enjoy the fruits of your labour?

What a waste that would be. Being the richest man or woman in the graveyard is hardly a title worth having, is it?

So my underlying message to you today, dear reader, is to find work you enjoy doing and to make sure you leave a little time to enjoy life too. A little ‘me time‘ is essential for everyone.

No one’s life is perfect:

Don’t forget that everyone faces challenges, occasionally. No one’s life is perfect. We all have problems.

Inevitably, your life will have its ups and downs. However, make sure there are more ups than downs in your life, as far as you are able.

Take some time to smell the roses and have a laugh.

As the old Music Hall song used to say; “enjoy yourself, it’s later than you think.”

You wouldn’t want to live forever, but you should be living your life to the fullest today.

Life really is short and it’s definitely later than you think. And as we say where I come from, “you’ll be a long time dead.”

So go on, live life and live it now. And if you’ve yet to find work you enjoy doing, keep looking.

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Copyright © Mann Island Media Limited 2024. All rights reserved.

101 Quotes on self-improvement to inspire you

In seeking quotes on self-improvement, perhaps you’re looking for a better life.

Well, life doesn’t have to be as it is now. It can be something much closer to what you’d like it to be. And with a little effort on your part, you can make it happen.

Remember you’re not defined by your past. That serves only as a series of lessons. The future is yours to create and it all starts with self-improvement.

Self-improvement is just a process whereby you decide what it is you want; you decide what skills you’ll need to develop in order to get what you want; you work out how you can get those skills, and then you set some goals and start improving the quality of your life and that of your loved ones.

It can be done. People do it all the time. And so can you.

Learn more and you’ll earn more.

You’ll need a little inspiration to motivate you and keep you going. Motivational quotes are useful because they help you acquire ideas on getting started and they’re beneficial in helping you realize your dreams and goals.

So here are 101 quotes on self-improvement to inspire you and propel you along the road to make your dreams a reality.

Enjoy them all and please share them with your friends.

Quotes on self-improvement (1-20):

  1. Let us cultivate our garden. ~Voltaire
  2. If you can dream it, you can do it. ~Walt Disney
  3. Good things happen to those who hustle. ~Chuck Noll
  4. You will never win if you never begin. ~Helen Rowland
  5. If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door. ~Milton Berle
  6. If you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time. ~Zig Ziglar
  7. All things are difficult before they are easy. ~Thomas Fuller
  8. The secret of getting ahead is getting started. ~Mark Twain
  9. Work harder on yourself than you do on your job. ~Jim Rohn
  10. He who conquers himself is the mightiest warrior. ~Confucius
  11. You just can’t beat the person who never gives up. ~Babe Ruth
  12. Believe you can and you’re halfway there. ~Theodore Roosevelt
  13. Set your goals high, and don’t stop till you get there. ~Bo Jackson
  14. Only I can change my life. No one can do it for me. ~Carol Burnett
  15. It is never too late to be what you might have been. ~George Eliot
  16. You cannot have a positive life and a negative mind. ~Joyce Meyer
  17. My purpose: to lift your spirit and to motivate you. ~Mavis Staples
  18. The dreaming has to be backed up by the doing. ~Carrie Wilkerson
  19. Problems are not Stop Signs, they are guidelines. ~Robert H. Schuller
  20. The only thing that overcomes hard luck is hard work. ~Harry Golden

Quotes on self-improvement (21-40):

  1. Nothing will work unless you do. ~Maya Angelou
  2. The only journey is the one within. ~Rainer Maria Rilke
  3. Either you run the day or the day runs you. ~Jim Rohn
  4. You don’t have to get it right the first time. ~Barbara Sher
  5. Life has no limitations, except the ones you make. ~Les Brown
  6. Without hard work, nothing grows but weeds. ~Gordon B. Hinckley
  7. Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star. ~W. Clement Stone
  8. The few who do are the envy of the many who only watch. ~Jim Rohn
  9. If you’re not doing what you love, you’re wasting your time. ~Zig Ziglar
  10. There is no such thing as failure. There are only results. ~Tony Robbins
  11. If you don’t like how things are, change it! You’re not a tree. ~Jim Rohn
  12. Don’t let someone else’s opinion of you become your reality. ~Les Brown
  13. Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can. ~Arthur Ashe
  14. The time is now. Stop hitting the snooze button on your life. ~Mel Robbins
  15. We will always tend to fulfil our own expectations of ourselves. ~Brian Tracy
  16. In order to succeed, we must first believe that we can. ~Nikos Kazantzakis
  17. It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you don’t stop. ~Confucius
  18. Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. ~Charles R. Swindoll
  19. A barrier is a limitation only when you perceive it as one. ~Stephen Richards
  20. When you have a dream, you’ve got to grab it and never let go. ~Carol Burnett

Quotes on self-improvement (41-55):

  1. The first step in solving a problem is to recognize that it does exist. ~Zig Ziglar
  2. Getting in touch with your true self must be your first priority. ~Tom Hopkins
  3. Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears. ~Les Brown
  4. You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great. ~Zig Ziglar
  5. The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today. ~H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
  6. Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practised every day. ~Jim Rohn
  7. Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible. ~Tony Robbins
  8. I never see failure as failure, but only as the game I must play and win. ~Tom Hopkins
  9. Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other. ~Walter Elliot
  10. The difference between being mediocre and achieving excellence is you. ~Stephen Richards
  11. Become addicted to constant and never-ending self-improvement. ~Anthony J. D’Angelo
  12. The will to succeed is important, but what’s more important is the will to prepare. ~Bobby Knight
  13. If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always be where you’ve always been. ~TD Jakes
  14. How dare you settle for less when the world has made it so easy for you to be remarkable? ~Seth Godin
  15. You are essentially who you create yourself to be, and all that occurs in your life is the result of your own making. ~Stephen Richards

Quotes on self-improvement (56-70):

  1. Opportunity does not knock it presents itself when you beat down the door. ~Kyle Chandler
  2. Don’t compare yourself to others. Compare yourself to the person you were yesterday. ~Anonymous
  3. When you play it too safe, you’re taking the biggest risk of your life. Time is the only wealth we’re given. ~Barbara Sher
  4. Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better. ~Samuel Beckett
  5. Decide what you want, decide what you are willing to exchange for it. Establish your priorities and go to work. ~H. L. Hunt
  6. You simply have to put one foot in front of the other and keep going. Put blinders on and plough right ahead. ~George Lucas
  7. Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more. ~Tony Robbins
  8. I’ve found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances. Be more active. Show up more often. ~Brian Tracy
  9. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  10. Change your life today. Don’t gamble on the future, act now, without delay. ~Simone de Beauvoir
  11. A strong, positive self-image is the best possible preparation for success. ~Joyce Brothers
  12. If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything. I’m positive that a doer makes mistakes. ~John Wooden
  13. Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact. ~William James
  14. I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination. ~Jimmy Dean
  15. Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence. ~Vince Lombardi

Quotes on self-improvement (71-85):

  1. Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. ~Robert Louis Stevenson
  2. There’s only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self. ~Aldous Huxley
  3. I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.’ ~Muhammad Ali
  4. Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. ~Martin Luther
  5. Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start. ~Nido Qubein
  6. Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret to success. ~Swami Sivananda
  7. Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. ~Thomas A. Edison
  8. Opportunities are usually disguised as hard work, so most people don’t recognize them. ~Ann Landers
  9. Nothing ever comes to one that is worth having, except as a result of hard work. ~Booker T. Washington
  10. Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune. ~Jim Rohn
  11. Become addicted to constant and never-ending self-improvement. ~Anthony J. D’Angelo
  12. The major value in life is not what you get. The major value in life is what you become. ~Jim Rohn
  13. Outstanding people have one thing in common: An absolute sense of mission. ~Zig Ziglar
  14. It doesn’t matter where you are coming from. All that matters is where you are going. ~Brian Tracy
  15. If there is one lesson I’ve learned from failure and success, it’s this. I am not the outcome. I am never the result. I am only the effort. ~Kamal Ravikant

Quotes on self-improvement (86-95):

  1. You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight. ~Jim Rohn
  2. Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong. ~Ella Fitzgerald
  3. If you want to succeed you should strike out on new paths, rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success. ~John D. Rockefeller
  4. Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time. ~Jim Rohn
  5. It is not as much about who you used to be, as it is about who you choose to be. ~Sanhita Baruah
  6. If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much. ~Jim Rohn
  7. If you believe in yourself and have dedication and pride – and never quit, you’ll be a winner. The price of victory is high but so are the rewards. ~Bear Bryant
  8. My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour, and some style. ~Maya Angelou
  9. No matter who you are, no matter what you did, no matter where you’ve come from, you can always change, and become a better version of yourself. ~Madonna
  10. We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment. ~Jim Rohn

Quotes on self-improvement (96-101):

  1. If you want to be successful, find someone who has achieved the results you want and copy what they do and you’ll achieve the same results. ~Tony Robbins
  2. Learning is the beginning of wealth. Learning is the beginning of health. Learning is the beginning of spirituality. Searching and learning are where the miracle process all begins. ~Jim Rohn
  3. Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new. ~Brian Tracy
  4. You don’t get paid for the hour. You get paid for the value you bring to the hour. ~Jim Rohn
  5. Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new. ~Brian Tracy
  6. You are your greatest asset. Put your time, effort and money into training, grooming, and encouraging your greatest asset. ~Tom Hopkins

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So dear reader, did you enjoy these quotes on self-improvement? I do hope so.

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Copyright © Mann Island Media Limited 2024. All Rights Reserved.

How to be happy and why you should be

How to be happy? Now, that’s a question I hear frequently.

Well, I believe that, if you’re going to be happy, then you need a sense of purpose.

Now just think about that for a minute. Your work takes up one-third of your life so surely it’s essential that you’re happy doing whatever you do?

So dear reader, if the question on your mind today is how to be happy in life then to find the answer it’s worth reflecting on your work for a moment and thinking about whether it’s right for you.

Does your work make you happy?

Do you believe your contribution to your job is something that only you can supply?

Would you say that your work is closely aligned with your natural talents?

If your job is a mismatch with their natural talents then you’re unlikely to do it as well as you might do otherwise. If you don’t do it well then it’s hard to feel a sense of pride in your work, surely? And, if you’re not doing it well, your boss is likely to be giving you a hard time too.

So in this scenario, you’re not going to be very happy, are you?

Let’s face it, spending your life doing something you don’t enjoy is such a waste, wouldn’t you agree?

You have so much natural talent that could be put to better use.

Yes, every job has its chores. Things you have to do which you hate but accept as part of the job. No job is perfect.

However, tedium should only be a small part of your whole work experience.

To feel happy and fulfilled doing the work you do means that you should enjoy at least 80% of your daily activity.

What happens if the job you do and your talents are mismatched?

Human beings are flexible and adaptable of course. So even in the worst job situations, people survive but at what cost to themselves?

How to be happy

The further you are from applying your natural talents and abilities, the less likely it is that you’ll enjoy your work in my experience. And being unhappy at work means you’re less likely to be happy in life. That’s a fact.

And if you’re not happy then it’s difficult to make a genuine contribution to life and the lives of other people. And this matters, particularly for those people who are your loved ones.

If your loved ones have to deal with someone who’s doing a job they don’t enjoy then it can make their lives miserable too. In fact, it can be no pleasure for anyone around you.

If you derive no pleasure from your work then life just becomes a grind. Also, it becomes stressful which is not very good for your health either.

The best and least stressful way to earn a living is by pursuing your interests and something which you both enjoy and which is compatible with your natural talents. This is the sweet spot and it’s how to be happy in life.

If society encouraged people to pursue their interests and work to their strengths, then we would not only be happier but we would become more productive.

And of course productive lives are happy lives too. We would all benefit and society would reap benefits too.

So think about what you enjoy doing and your natural talents, and then think about how you can best apply them.

It’s important to be happy doing what you do, but if you’ve yet to find work that makes you happy, then keep looking and don’t give up until you find it.

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When you share, everyone wins.

Please share this post now and I’ll be forever grateful. You’ll be helping a keen blogger reach a wider audience.

Thank you.

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The purpose of life: What’s it really all about?

THE PURPOSE OF LIFEToday, I want to explore the purpose of life. To me, life must have a purpose. Why are we here?

What’s life all about when it all comes down to it?

Should life just be a treadmill of meeting other people’s expectations, or should our aim simply be to lead lives that make us happy?

The purpose of life

What does life mean to you, dear reader?

Do you ever feel that you’re just living life on a treadmill, constantly running to meet the expectations of everyone around you?

Perhaps you worry about what other people think about you. If you do, you’re certainly not alone.

Too many people waste their time worrying about what others think of them.

If only they realised that other people spend little or no time thinking about them at all.

Your approach is just as valid as the next person’s

Most people are too busy trying to deal with their own lives. They don’t have the time to think much about anyone else’s life.

So why not just be yourself and lead your own life on your terms?  No law says you must lead the life others think you should lead.

Your approach to life is just as valid as the next person’s, and as long as you’re not hurting anyone else, you’re free to choose how you live.

Don’t try to be something you’re not

You can only be the person you are. Anything else would be fake, wouldn’t it?

Just be yourself and accept yourself for the person you are. You’re a true original, and you can be truly proud of that.

Remind yourself frequently that you’re better than you think you are and that you’re as good as anyone.

Constantly reinforce your self-belief

If you haven’t got much self-belief right now, then a sensible strategy would be to fake it until it happens naturally. And that will come with the little successes you’ll achieve over time.

Never consciously try to impress anyone else. It doesn’t get you anywhere worth going. Just do what comes naturally to you.

You’re only going to have this one life, so live it on your terms. Enjoy your life for what it is and make the most of it.

Don’t let life happen, make it happen

Never, ever just let life happen to you; decide on the life you want and then make it happen.

It’s important to know what you want, and you should never give up until you get it.

Always be you, but make it the best version of you.

And remember this: an original is always more impressive than a copy. So don’t copy other people. Be original.

Life begins outside your comfort zone

And remember this too: life begins once you’ve stepped beyond your comfort zone. That’s where the real challenges are, and that’s where you will grow.

And you must never stop growing.

So step outside your comfort zone, look those challenges in the eye, and just give them a wink.

You’re more than a match for them all. They should be quaking in their boots.

Go on, live life! Now!

It’s later than you think.

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THE PURPOSE OF LIFEIf you found this blog post interesting, then please share it on social media with your friends.

When you share, everyone wins.

Go on, please share it now, and I’ll be forever grateful.

You’ll be helping a keen blogger reach a wider audience.

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How to get along with people and make the world better

How to get along with peopleHow to get along with people? It’s a classic problem. We don’t have to like people, but life’s better if we can get along with them. But how?

Life’s great challenge:

Dear reader, do you have problems getting along with other people?

Do you find it difficult to deal with some people as you go about your daily routine?

Well, it’s true; some people can be challenging and quite difficult at times. I’m sure most readers will have had that experience occasionally.

However, in my experience, most people just want you to be nice to them. They want to be respected for who they are and treated with courtesy.

I’ve learned over the years that if you respect people and take a genuine interest in their lives, then generally they’ll respond warmly to you. Not all, perhaps, but certainly most people.

How to get along with people:

Think about it.

We all just want to be treated with courtesy and respect and appreciated for who we are and what we do, don’t we? Certainly, I do. Don’t you, dear reader?

If we accept that as true, then the way to get along with other people is not difficult, surely?

The trick is to treat people with courtesy and respect, regardless of who they are or what they do. Treat them as you would prefer to be treated.

Be kind and considerate to them as individuals, and there’s a good chance that they’ll treat you well too.

You don’t have to like people, but life’s better if you can get along with them. And if you can get along with them and get to know them, then you might just get to like them in time as well.

The world can be a better place:

If we can all get along, then it will make the world a better place.

If we can all be kind and considerate to our fellow human beings, then we could have a world free from strife and tension.

So go on, show people some respect, show them a little appreciation, take an interest in them for who they are and what they do, and above all, never underestimate the power of a thank you.

I always feel better if I think I’m appreciated, and I’m sure you do too. We all do.

So the trick to getting along with people is simply to treat them as you would prefer them to treat you. It works every time for me.

And I’m confident that it will work well for you too, dear reader.

So go on, make every effort to get along with people, and make the world a better place.

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How to Build Character: 11 Steps to Success

How to build characterHow to build character is a question many people ask me frequently.

Whether it’s someone seeking to build their character or wanting to help improve someone else’s character, it’s a question that concerns many of us.

However, there is an obvious supplementary question. What do we mean by character?

There’s a difference between being a character and being a person of character.

The former expression just refers to someone being a little bit eccentric, perhaps a natural wit, or even a raconteur. However, that’s not the subject of this post, despite those being admirable qualities, of course.

The point being considered here is how to become a person of character.

So what does it mean to be a person of character?

First of all, people of character usually do what is right regardless of whether they’re being watched or not.

They also display traits such as honesty, integrity, courage, manners, self-reliance, commitment, and determination.

The comedian Will Rogers once jokingly observed that to be of character, people should “live in such a way that they wouldn’t be ashamed to sell their parrot to the town gossip.

So being of good character is an important thing to be, I think.

Developing good character:

If achieving sustained success is your aim, then talent alone isn’t enough. Talent might get you into the limelight briefly, but without strong character, you’re unlikely to remain there for too long.

The process of developing good character is one that is ongoing too. So you have to keep working on it.

Essentially, a person’s character is composed of three things:

  1. Values: having the right values and knowing what matters most.
  2. Doing what is right: even when no one is watching.
  3. Being a decent person: means showing wisdom, honesty, integrity, love, humility, loyalty, courage, compassion, empathy, self-awareness, and a willingness to recognize fair criticism.

We all have at least some work to do if we are to become and remain people of good character.

This is an area where constant improvement is necessary, however good you may be right now.

Some people may be well on the way to being of good character, while others may still have a lot of work to do.

However, those that are still some way off can change, and they can grow in character. You can be better if you want to be better, and you can practice the habits necessary. These include:-

How to build character:

How to build character1. Decide you’ll be better:

As mature adults, our first duty is to take care of ourselves and to be the best people we can be. To live lives worthy of respect. So decide to be the person you really could be.

2. Ask searching questions:

It is a fact that too many people go to their graves with their full potential unrealized.

They never quite develop their characters to the point where they leave a genuine legacy and an example for others to follow.

Ask yourself this question: If I were to die tomorrow, how would I be remembered at my funeral?

What would people say about you? What qualities would they use to describe you?

How would you prefer to be remembered?

What would you like people to say about you? And how can you change now to ensure they do?

Depending on the answers to those questions, you may well decide to make a few changes in your life.

3. Step out of your comfort zone:

We grow as people in that area beyond our comfort zone.

So, set yourself some challenges that stretch you.

Don’t fear failure. There’s no such thing. Just opportunities to learn and start again better prepared.

Conquering the challenges you set yourself will help you grow in character.

4. Life-long learning:

It doesn’t matter how good you are; there’s always room for improvement.

Improvement comes through education and learning, whether formal or informal.

That valuable commodity known as experience is gained by doing things, perhaps making some mistakes, and then learning the lessons from those mistakes.

Nothing is more valuable to us than the lessons we learn from the mistakes we make. Those are lessons we’ll never forget.

5. Work on yourself:

To quote the late, great Jim Rohn,Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.We’re all works in progress. Make sure you keep getting better.

Don’t leave them saying, She used to be really good. When they speak of you, make sure they say, “She just keeps getting better. She’s an example to us all. That applies equally to ‘He’ too, of course.

6. Never fear failure:

How often are we reluctant to try something for fear that we might fail?

But what is failure? It’s just an outcome we didn’t want and a lesson to be learned.

So we should embrace our failures. We can use them to our advantage.

If we’re willing to try again, we do so with more information and experience.

Failure is not something to fear; it’s something that allows us to learn.

So, never, ever fear failure.

7. Pursue excellence:

If anything is worth doing, then it’s worth doing properly. The way you live your life is no exception.

8. Add value:

Our contribution to society is in the value we add.

That might be in the example we set or the work that we produce.

We don’t get paid for the hour. What we actually get paid for is the value that we put into the hour. So make sure you leave every situation better than you found it.

9. Accept every challenge:

Never underestimate the importance of taking on a challenge.

A challenge provides us with experience through which we’ll learn powerful lessons.

It’s also the means through which character is developed in the process.

Not only will you learn more about your character, but you’ll also learn about your capacity to achieve.

10. Be determined:

If success is your aim, it won’t happen without hard work and determination.

Being good is not enough. You must be determined to get to where you want to go. That’s everything if success is your aim.

11. Be persistent:

Never accept an answer unless it’s the one you want.

And never accept any outcome as the final outcome unless it’s the one that you want.

Most importantly, never quit until you get to where you want to be or you’ve achieved the goal that you set for yourself.

Remember, winners never quit, and quitters never win.

You can be the winner you can be with determination and hard work.

Where to go from here?

If you recognize the need to change, start with your values.

What values will you live by from now until you are dead?

Now, of course, it’s not just about values, but value too. Be a person with values and of value.

So, what value will you add to the lives of others from now on?

Then think about challenges you could take on to build your character.

In taking on a challenge, we can often surprise ourselves in terms of just how far we can go.

Through a challenge, you can learn new skills, sharpen existing skills, and improve your self-confidence.

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Why is my life so bad right now?

Self-helpWhy is my life so bad right now? Have you ever asked yourself that question?

Perhaps you feel you deserve something better from life? Maybe your life’s not all you’d like it to be. Do you want more, possibly?

Does today’s question resonate with you, dear reader?

You look around and you see people enjoying the sort of life you’d like and you can’t help wondering how it’s all working out for them but not for you.

Who’s at fault?

If you feel this way then you’re not alone, that much is certain.

However, if you do feel this way, do you ever wonder who’s at fault for your life failing to meet your expectations?

Maybe you feel the fault lies with your parents or the teachers you had at school, possibly?

Perhaps you feel the fault lies with your boss or your employer.

They didn’t provide you with the right training or you didn’t get the breaks when there was an opportunity for promotion? Someone else got the promotion simply because they were well in with the boss, right? Perhaps you feel that you were a better candidate than them and yet they got the job? Life can be so unfair, right?

Well, my friend, I have to tell you that, if your life sucks, there’s only one person you can blame. Just look in any mirror and you will see that person staring right back at you.

We’re responsible for our own lives and our lives will always be what we choose to make of them.

Yes, you may have had a few bad breaks in life. Yes, perhaps your parents and/or teachers could have been better. So what? Life’s still what you choose to make it.

I’m not suggesting anything’s easy and, of course, there will always be challenges. Nevertheless, there will always be opportunities for the enterprising and fleet-footed too. And you can choose to take some of them or not.

You have to decide what it is you want. You have to work out how to get what you want. Then it requires determination and a lot of hard work on your part to get where you really want to be.

An endless stream of opportunities:

Life really is an endless stream of opportunities you can choose to take or not. Look for ways to add value to the lives of others and you’ll soon see that there are opportunities there for the taking every single day.

By providing a service and adding value to the lives of others, there’s always money to be made.

Keep educating yourself and learning new skills and you’ll be able to add more value to people.

Add more value and you’ll get paid more.

Manage the money you make wisely and you can build your own wealth over time. It can be done and people do. So, why not you?

However, there are no shortcuts. Nothing ever happens by chance.

On very rare occasions you might get lucky and something will fall into your lap. However, mostly you’ll have to work very hard to get what you want. You have to go out and make things happen I’m afraid. That’s life, unfortunately.

Life and relationships:

It’s the same with relationships too.

Find someone who you’d be happy to have as a friend, even without intimacy, and you’ll have the basis for a healthy relationship.

Friendship and trust underpin a good relationship. As does commitment and a willingness to put in as much as you take out.

It all starts with really knowing what you want.

Know your ‘Why?’

If you know your ‘Why?’ then that will give you the motivation you need to keep going until you get to where you want to be.

If you want it badly enough, you’ll find a way to make it happen.

That said, you have to be positive. You have to be prepared to make a few mistakes. And you have to be prepared to learn from those mistakes.

Never fear mistakes:

On the road to success, a few mistakes are inevitable.

However, as learning opportunities, mistakes are truly invaluable. You’ll learn much more from any mistakes you make than you will from any successes you enjoy.

That said, never allow yourself to be driven too far off course. Keep your eye on the prize you want. And never accept an answer unless it’s the one that you really want.

Don’t be discouraged:

Above all, never, ever let people discourage you from pursuing your dreams and ambitions.

It doesn’t matter what other people think; the only thing that matters is what you think. It doesn’t matter whether they believe you can do it, as long you believe you can do it.

You can be whatever you want to be, as long as you really, really want whatever it is you think you want.

Everything is possible for those who never give up until they get to where they want to be. Life really is what you make it. I can tell you that from my own experience.

You must also remember this though, life’s not a rehearsal.

You only get to go around just once. Well, as far as we know.

So make it the best you can and make the most of being you. Remember this; You’re as good as anyone and better than most.

There’s a price to be paid:

You can have the life you want but not without hard work and commitment. There’s a price to be paid and that price will be paid in blood, sweat and tears. You don’t get anything for nothing and the price must always be paid first.

If you don’t want to pay the price then the life you lead will always fall short of your expectations. Sorry if that bothers you but it’s a fact.

Where to start?

So, what actions will you take now to start improving your life?

Start by making a list, set some goals and then get going.

It’s never too late to improve your situation. It’s never too late to make your life better. And it’s never too late to be all that you could be.

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10 very useful tips to be successful in life

TIPS TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN LIFELooking for some useful tips to be successful in life, dear reader? What habits should you develop? Today I offer you my top 10 list.

What’s the key to success?

Well, I can tell you right now that there’s no one, single thing that on its own will ensure that you enjoy some personal success. There’s no silver bullet, I’m afraid.

However, there are things you can do and habits you can develop that will help you to become the successful person you really could be.

Dear reader, you can be successful and it’s never too late. Other people succeed, so why not you?

Know what you want and know why:

Essentially success comes from knowing what you want and knowing why.

If you establish some goals and take a disciplined approach towards achieving those goals then you’re on your way.

However, you’ll also need to adopt some good habits that will help you achieve those goals and help you to keep going until you get to where you want to be.

Adopting good habits will also mark you out as a role model for others too, which means you’ll be a leader.

Tips to be successful in life:

Here is my list of the top 10 tips to be successful in life.

These are good habits you really ought to consider developing from now on:-

1. Believe in yourself:

You must believe in yourself, dear reader. That’s a given if success is your aim. If you don’t believe in yourself then why would anyone else believe in you?

If you lack self-belief then you must start reinforcing a belief in yourself straightaway with a daily mantra.

Every morning and every evening go to your bathroom mirror and repeat the following to yourself 10 times each time:-

“I’m as good as anyone and I’m better than most. I will be a success.”

It is essential that you remind yourself of this constantly.

Self-belief is an essential ingredient if you’re going to succeed. Reminding yourself that you’re as good as anyone will help reinforce self-belief in both your conscious and subconscious minds.

Believing in yourself and your ability to succeed is more important than anything else. It is if success is your aim, I can tell you that from experience.

2. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else:

You are who you are and you can only be the person you are. Anything else would be a fake.

You have your own special qualities and no one else on earth is quite like you. You have your own strengths and of course, you have a few weaknesses too. Everyone does.

Other people have their own unique qualities too, of course. However, that doesn’t mean they’re better than you.

They’re just different. You can’t be them, so don’t try. And they can’t be you either. So concentrate on being yourself. Everyone else is taken.

If you want to be a star, then you must shine for being you and for the special magic that only you can bring to this world. You’re unique, so take pride in that and put your best foot forward.

Never compare yourself to anyone else and never fret if you feel that you can’t match someone else in some particular way. Remember, there will be ways in which they cannot match you either. 

3. Always keep the main thing the main thing:

Whether you like it or not you’ll be judged by what you deliver and the value you add.

If your job is to paint my house, then I will judge you on how well you’ve painted my house.

I don’t care how much help you might have given to my neighbour. If you’ve painted my house badly or the job hasn’t been done properly then you’ve failed as far as I’m concerned. Do the job badly and I will not be happy.

Often in the workplace, our inability to say “No” leads us to be completely distracted by a request to help someone else.

And that distraction can result in us failing to do something that would have moved us closer to the successful conclusion of one of the goals we’ve set for ourselves.

Losing sight of our own high-value tasks can make us less productive and less valuable in the eyes of our employers. Workplace distractions can lead to us helping other people achieve their objectives at the expense of our own if we’re not careful.

Being a team player is important of course and there will be occasions when providing assistance to a colleague is the right thing to do for the greater good of the team. However, it should never, ever be at the expense of you delivering what you will be expected to deliver regardless.

You’re judged by what you deliver, so never lose focus on what you’re expected to do.

Never be afraid to be assertive. You don’t have to be chippy, unpleasant or impolite. You just have to say something like, “Look I’m really sorry, I would love to help you but I have this to complete by 5 pm” or whatever.

Remember, appearing to be reasonable is much better, for you, than trying to be too reasonable.

Always, always keep the main thing the main thing.

Being too helpful may help others but it probably won’t help you.

It will however increase your stress levels if you’re not careful.

Focus on your own goals, ruthlessly. 

4. Accept that you will make mistakes occasionally:

No professional likes to make mistakes.

Nevertheless, they are inevitable occasionally. That’s a fact of life.

No one is so perfect they can avoid mistakes completely. And no one ever achieved anything without making a few mistakes along the way.

So it’s fine to make mistakes occasionally providing you don’t make too many and providing you don’t make the same mistakes repeatedly.

When you’ve made a mistake, it’s important, to be honest, accept it, and above all learn from it.

Making mistakes is all part of us gaining that valuable commodity known as experience.

So just do your best and accept that, like everyone else, you’re not perfect nor will you ever be.

However remember this; just because you’re not perfect, it doesn’t mean you cannot be exceptional at what you do. As professionals, we always strive to get better at what we do.

Mastery of your craft is a worthy aim and one which requires constant study and practice, and occasionally making mistakes. 

5. Don’t be afraid to take a few risks:

Risk and reward go hand in hand. You can’t have one without the other.

You’ll never achieve anything exceptional if you always play it safe. Well, not unless you’re very, very lucky anyway.

Sometimes you just have to follow your instincts and go for it.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t weigh up the pros and cons before you take action. It’s fine to consider the potential consequences before you take a risk. Equally, it’s fine to consider the odds of achieving a positive outcome and whether the potential reward merits the degree of risk involved.

Consider risk carefully but don’t dwell on it too long. Analysis shouldn’t replace action. You cannot get to second base unless you take your foot off first base and go for it.

And anytime you take a risk don’t panic if initially, things don’t go quite as you’d imagined.

If you’ve used your judgement with care then there’s every possibility that you’ll get the outcome you want.

So hold your nerve and just believe in yourself.

You may not get it right every time but you’ll get it right more than you get it wrong. And even when you’re wrong you’ll learn a lesson.

Get it right and you’ll be that much closer to achieving a goal.

So be willing to take a calculated risk when necessary. 

6. Learn from experience:

As suggested earlier, experience is a valuable commodity.

It’s the by-product of making mistakes and taking risks. It’s the invaluable benefit we derive when things don’t quite work out as we’d intended.

The most important thing about experience is that we learn from it.

And of course, we can learn from seeing others make mistakes too, as well as from anything we’ve done ourselves.

The lessons we get from real experience are far more valuable to us than anything anyone can tell us, or anything we can read in a book for that matter.

It’s the education we get at the University of Life and the School of Hard Knocks.

However, remember this; you don’t owe anyone an explanation for your mistakes.

When you make a mistake, it makes sense, to be honest with yourself and others of course. Beyond that, you should not feel the need to explain yourself in detail.

Mistakes happen and no one starts out with the intention of getting something wrong. If you get an outcome you didn’t want then just take it on the chin, learn the lesson and move on.

Everyone makes mistakes occasionally and you’re no different. To err is human. That’s life. 

7. Never take anything personally:

Apparently, the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre once observed that “Hell is other people.

I’m sure there are times when we all feel that he may have had a point.

We’re all struggling to get through life as best we can and life’s never easy for anyone. Everyone wants what they believe to be their fair share of life’s ‘pie’. Some people want your share too.

Sometimes that can leave us feeling like everyone is giving us grief and deliberately making life more difficult than it needs to be.

However, mostly in our dealings with people, there’s nothing personal.

Life is just ‘dog-eat-dog’. People may be a little insensitive at times, as they pursue their own agenda, but generally, they’re not out to hurt us specifically.

So if it’s not personal, then never take it personally.

And on those rare occasions when it does prove to be personal, don’t give them the satisfaction of a reaction or showing that they’ve got to you.

Look them in the eye and show them that it doesn’t bother you. Your message has to be, I’m made of steel. You’ll have to try harder than that if you’re going to penetrate my shield. 

8. If you’re digging a hole for yourself, stop digging:

When you realise you’re digging a hole for yourself, you have two choices:-

  1. You can keep digging and the hole in which you find yourself will simply get bigger and more problematic; or
  2. You can recognize the situation for what it is and stop digging immediately.

It is always best to stop digging immediately, in my experience.

When you stop digging you might have a few fences to mend, of course.

Certainly, you’ll have to accept responsibility.

And you’ll probably have to apologize to some people, depending on the circumstances.

Regardless of what it all means, it’s always better to recognize a bad situation for what it is and take it on the chin, rather than making everything even worse.

On the positive side, having the ability to recognize when you’re digging a hole for yourself and having the maturity to deal with the consequences is a sign of self-confidence. That’s something for which you’ll gain other people’s respect.

In my experience, people will respect you if you’re prepared to say, “Hey, you know what, I’ve made a bit of a mess of this one, so I’ll stop right here and let’s try again. Sorry but like everyone else, I’m not perfect and I make mistakes occasionally.

Just because you didn’t quite get it right doesn’t mean you cannot show confidence in how you respond.

Respond in the right way and your confidence will be well placed. 

9. Let go of any anger:

We all get angry occasionally but anger never gets you any place worth going.

React in anger and almost certainly you’ll regret it.

That’s not to suggest that you should not react at all. However, before you react let the anger subside. Just let it go.

Leave it for 24 hours if necessary, until you’re better able to reflect with a calm head. There’s a lot to be said for ‘sleeping on it’ in my experience.

That way you’re better placed to use your judgement carefully and make rational decisions.

In making decisions, revenge should not form any part of how you plan to react.

Revenge won’t get you to any place worth going either and you’ll almost certainly regret that too.

10. Learn to switch off:

We all need a little ‘me time’ regularly, otherwise, we’ll burn out.

We all need time to relax and recharge our batteries.

That means switching off completely.

By doing that one of the great benefits is that we gain a fresh perspective on whatever’s happening in our lives.

Surprisingly perhaps we’ll also get plenty of new ideas in the process.

In fact, you’ll find you get some of your best ideas when you’re not trying to come up with new ideas. That’s ironic I know but it’s true, in my experience. 

Bonus tip:

Don’t take yourself too seriously. No one else does.

If you can’t laugh at yourself occasionally you might just be missing out on the funniest thing happening at that moment. Why miss out on a good laugh?

When you’re working, take your job seriously, but never yourself.

Concluding remarks:

So there you have it. If you want to be successful, start by developing good habits.

This list of tips would be a good start but you will find that there are plenty of others too.

Above all else, make sure you’re adding value to everything you do. Our purpose in life should be to add value to the lives of others.

If you’re adding genuine value then you can’t go too far wrong.

So, dear reader, where do you add the most value and what are your goals?

You should know the answers to these questions and you should write them down.

If you don’t know, it’s time to find some answers.

Nothing ever happens by accident. You have to make it happen.

You can be successful, everyone can, but it requires you to know where you’re going; to know why you’re going there, and to be prepared to work very hard until you get there.

You can do it, dear reader. So, good luck!

Please share this post with your friends:

If you found this article useful then please share it on social media with your friends. When you share, everyone wins.

Please share it now and I’ll be ever so grateful. You’ll be helping a keen blogger reach a wider audience.

Thank you for your support.

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3 things you need to know about money

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT MONEYToday I’d like you to think about some things you need to know about money, dear reader. In other words, think about what it all really means.

It’s natural to dream about being rich, of course.

Most people dream about being able to buy whatever they want and go anywhere and everywhere they’d like to go, possibly even in a private jet.

The attraction of having that pot of gold is why a lot of people will chase every rainbow.

However, whilst money is necessary for sustaining life, there are some things you should really understand about money.

Here are three of them:-

Things you need to know about money:

1. Having money brings its own pressures:

A great fortune is a great slavery. ~Seneca

It’s reasonable to want to create wealth and build a fortune. As suggested above, you want to feel financially secure, don’t you? Why wouldn’t you?

However, being financially secure doesn’t mean you’ll have a life without problems and worry.

You’ll just have different problems and different things to worry about.

No one goes through life without problems. Dealing with problems and challenges is an inevitable part of human existence.

Put simply, having money brings its own pressures.

Once you’ve got money your biggest concern will be to ensure that you hang on to it.

Inevitably that means you can become a slave to managing your money, preserving its capital value and protecting your fortune.

Being wealthy may be a nice problem to have, but it’s no less of a problem for that.

So keep it all in perspective.

Things you need to know about money2. Money can never be more important than people:

We love to earn money, who doesn’t? It gets you things. ~Katie Price

Earning money is great and it does allow you to buy things you want and things you need. However money won’t take care of you when you’re ill.

Yes, it might enable you to buy in some hired help.

However, that’s not the same as having someone around who genuinely cares about your well-being. That someone for whom you matter much more than money ever will.

In my experience, whilst money is important, nothing in our lives matters more than friends and loved ones. Human beings are social animals. So only people matter to us really.

Never focus on money to the point where you neglect the people who should matter most to you. Forget about them and eventually, they will forget about you.

You can have all the money in the world, but you’ll have nothing at all without friends and loved ones.

Go out and earn lots of money by all means, and enjoy it too.

However, always maintain a sense of balance in your life and make sure that you allocate some time for the people who matter most to you.

An investment of your time in the people you love is an investment that will pay dividends.

3. Money is a precious resource so use it wisely:

A penny saved is a penny earned. ~Benjamin Franklin

I make no apology for repeating Benjamin Franklin’s money mantra, repeated frequently by generations of well-meaning parents to their profligate children. It’s as valid today as it was in his day.

Whether Franklin was referring to money saved when making purchases or money saved from income is not obvious in his statement but that doesn’t matter.

The underlying point is that you have to be careful with your money because saving money is the key to building wealth and becoming financially independent. No one ever got rich by wasting their money.

Money like time is a precious resource, so use it wisely.

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