Your philosophy for life matters. Here’s why

Philosophy for LifeDo you believe your own philosophy for life is important dear reader?

What do I mean by ‘your own philosophy‘?

In this case I’m not referring to the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality and existence and people like Aristotle.

By philosophy I’m referring to your mind-set, whether it’s positive or negative, and how you choose to see the world around you.

I believe personal philosophy really does matter.

I think how you choose to look at life and the world around you will influence your life experiences to a greater degree than you might expect. It’ll also influence how happy you’ll be.

My own philosophy for life is simple.

Firstly I accept the world around me is the world around me. It is what it is. Stuff happens and I have little or no control over most of what happens. That’s just life.

Politicians will come and politicians will go. They’ll promise much but deliver very little usually.

Philosophically I accept that which I cannot influence directly. I see little point in worrying about any of it. Why worry about stuff you can’t change?

In my experience people will always look after their own interests first.

That’s fair enough if you think about it because why would they do otherwise? If they don’t look after their own interests then no one else will that’s for sure.

The underlying point here is that most of what’s happening around us is all just noise really. All we can do is work around it. And basically that’s what I try to do.

I focus on my own interests and those of my family and I always do my best to protect what’s mine. My family will always come first and I will do anything for them. Well, anything that’s legal at least.

To do the best for my family I recognise that I have to be the best that I can be. To have skills and knowledge that will allow me to add as much value in my work as I possibly can. So I take personal development seriously. That way the more value I can add the greater will be my income.

I’m a reader and a keen learner and I’m constantly working to add to my skillset and knowledge. Learning for me is a lifelong process, it never stops, and I will keep learning until I no longer have the energy to pick up a book.

I believe that the better informed we are then the better prepared we’ll be to excel in our chosen field of work. We’ll also be better prepared to seize any opportunities that come our way too.

Let’s face it dear reader, work is just doing stuff for other people in exchange for money.

We work in order to generate income. And we generate income to put bread on the table and a roof over ourselves and the heads of our loved ones.

Whilst work gives us a sense of purpose and adds value to our lives, we should not live just to work. The idea should be to work to live. Well I think so anyway.

We must work hard when we’re at work of course but we must enjoy life with family as much as possible too. As they say where I come from, we’ll be a long time dead.

My aim in life is to be financially independent with multiple income streams.

With multiple income streams there’s a reduced risk of not having any income at all. I think it makes sense not having all your eggs in one basket.

Essentially I see life as a game. And my aim is to become a master of the game of life.

We must look after our own interests because no one else will.

We must be prepared to be ruthless when necessary. By that I don’t mean being nasty or mean to people but if you don’t push hard sometimes, chances are you’ll lose out to those who are willing to make good use of their elbows.

My point is that we can’t afford to be overly sentimental and on occasions in making the right decisions for us it may prove to be less favourable for someone else.

If that happens, that’s life I’m afraid. We must make decisions that are right for us.

Sometimes you really have got to be prepared to use your elbows if you’re going to grab your fair share of life’s pie. Don’t be too willing to let other people go first. You might find there’s nothing left for you.

As always there’s a balance to be struck of course but never lose sight of your own interests and never do anything which works against your own interests.

There is no utopian place where all’s well and the sun shines every day. Life’s life. Some of it’s good and some of it’s not quite so good.

However in the end it’s what we make of it that counts. We get out what we put in. There’s no free ride for anyone. On Spaceship Earth we’re all crew.

All you can do with life is deal with it as best you can.

Enjoy the summers but make sure you’re prepared for the winters too. Winters always follow summers, so be prepared.

Enjoy the good times and when life gets difficult all you can do is take it on the chin and move on.

Worrying about anything you cannot control just steals your joy and spoils your day.

Life’s too short. Do what you can, with what you have, where you are and most of all enjoy every minute because the years all go by in the blink of an eye. So don’t die before you’ve lived.

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How to develop effective time management skills

Time Management Skills1. Time Management Skills:

Developing effective time management skills is an essential ingredient for success, I’m sure you’ll agree. You can’t add real value without making the best use of your time.

However making the best use is not always easy in practice, is it?

So, how good are you dear reader at managing your time?

Do you have a reputation for being ruthlessly efficient and productive or are you someone who’s always struggling to keep up?

When someone asks you to do something in the office, do you accept their request without question and simply add the task to your ‘To Do’ list? If you do, you’re not alone. Many people will do that in my experience.

Alternatively, perhaps you’re the type who thinks carefully relative to your priorities before you accept such a request? Now be honest. We’d all like to think we’re the latter, when in fact far too many people are the former I think.

2. Productivity is what really matters:

In the world of work it’s easy to confuse being busy with being productive but these two concepts are not the same thing at all, are they?

For instance, you can be busy doing things that don’t really need doing at all. Whereas being genuinely productive means delivering real results from high value tasks which can only be done by someone with your skills.

And let’s face it, reputations are built by being productive not merely by being busy. It’s the results you deliver not energy you expend that matter most.

3. Time is your most precious resource:

How often do you hear someone say, “Oh, I would love to do that, if only I had the time.

And yet we all have exactly the same amount of time, i.e. 168 hours per week.

Time is simply a resource like money, albeit it’s more important than money. I say that because you can get more money but you can’t get more time. None of can do that, can we?

So you must learn to use your time wisely. Time is your most precious resource, so you must develop effective time management skills.

4. High value tasks must take precedence:

Modern pressures mean it’s easy for us to try to do too many things. We can all be a bit like that, including me dear reader.

Our lives are cluttered with too many activities, too many objectives, too many distractions and far too many demands on our time.

The result is that we tend to lose focus on what really matters most and in the end we don’t do anything as well as we should have done.

In my experience, in most jobs you’ll find that 90% of productivity is down to completing the top three or four major activities within that job. What I’d call high value tasks.

If you take the top three major activities, the high value tasks, associated with your job and focus on those to the exclusion of just about everything else you’ll almost certainly maximise your productivity and efficiency.

5. The most common time management mistake:

The problem is, when we’re working, we seem to find it easier to focus on minor tasks and random actions requested by other people.

We feel obliged to accept requests from others. It’s a common mistake of which we can all be guilty.

Now, whilst tidying up all those minor tasks might make us feel like we’re achieving some quick wins we’re usually fooling ourselves.

By the end of the day we’re usually left with a sense that we haven’t done all we should have done and that leaves us feeling stressed.

And that’s when we start to think about how we might improve our time management.

6. We can’t do everything, nor should we try:

We must recognise that we can’t do everything but we can be selective about what we choose to do.

And if we’re going to get those major tasks of higher value completed then they must take precedence over those low value, minor tasks, which can always wait if necessary.

High value tasks should always take precedence over low value tasks.

7. Work smarter:

People often think of time management as a skill which would allow them to work faster. Well let me tell you this, that’s not the idea at all.

Effective time management skills allow us to work smarter, rather than harder.

Instead of getting lost in the minutiae of everyday life, with effective time management skills, we focus on and prioritise those things that will add most value to our productivity. In other words, we focus on high value activity.

8. The law of three:

So. if time management is an issue for you dear reader, start by taking a good hard look at your list of daily activities and ask yourself these three questions:-

  1. What single task can only I do and when completed by me will add the most value to the business?
  2. What’s the second task on my list only I can do and when I’ve completed it would allow me to add the most value to the business?
  3. What is the third task on my list only I can do and when completed by me will add the most value to the business?

Once you’ve identified your list of three major, high value tasks then that’s where your focus should be each day before you touch any other minor tasks or accept random requests from other people.

9. The most powerful time management tool:

The point of work is to deliver results. You’ll deliver the best results if you concentrate on your top three major tasks first.

And never forget that you’ll be be judged by the results you actually deliver. No one cares what you had to do for someone else, they only care about the results they expected from you.

Your time is your time and you must decided how it is to be used most effectively.

Just because someone asks for a piece of your time doesn’t mean you’re obliged to give it to them at the expense of your own productivity. Never be afraid to deploy the most effective time management tool of them all.

And what is the most effective time management tool? It’s the word NO.

Think of the word NO as a baseball bat.

Whenever someone makes a request of you then NO is the means by which you can whack that request right out of the ballpark.

10. Be in control of your time at all times:

You’re not obliged to agree to a request even if someone asks nicely. It’s reasonable to be working to your own priorities.

All too often we feel obliged to do things for other people when actually we should have just said politely, “No, I’m really sorry but I can’t do that right now for you because I have to deliver this by 5pm and it’s a priority.”

If our personal productivity matters to us, and it should, then our focus should always be on our own major, high value deliverables.

Unfortunately we allow ourselves to be driven by the agendas of other people.

However that’s not good for our productivity, nor is it good for our well-being and stress levels.

11. People will take everything you’re prepared to give:

I can tell you from experience that other people will take everything you’re prepared to give and a bit more besides. That’s the nature of people.

However if you fail to deliver what you’re actually being paid to deliver, then no list of incidental work completed for other people will be accepted as an adequate plea in your defence when your boss wants to know why you’ve failed to deliver your own high value results.

If you’re painting my house I’ll measure you on the quality and timeliness of your work, not the amount of help you gave to my neighbour by, say, looking after her dog.

What you do for other people is irrelevant to me, should you fail to deliver what I’m actually paying you to deliver.

12. Focus on your priorities:

In reality if your colleagues can’t get something done by you they’ll simply ask someone else. So let them.

Why worry? Just be very polite when faced with a random request but say NO firmly. I can tell you this, you’ll have to be disciplined but it’s a habit well worth developing.

We can all be guilty of expending far too much of our energy helping other people achieve their aims, to the detriment of our own interests and our ability to deliver our own high value results.

To achieve anything of significance in life we must be focused on our own major activities.

We must concentrate on completing our big three major high value deliverables daily and focus relentlessly on working towards achieving our own goals generally.

13. The need for balance:

If you’re asked to do something then it’s perfectly reasonable to say NO, if to do otherwise would prevent you from delivering the results you’re being paid to deliver in a timely manner.

Yes of course, occasionally there will be tasks you’re obliged to accept for whatever reason.

However mostly being firm in declining such a request is a sign that you’re assertive and in control of delivering as much value as possible.

Another polite but firm response to a request might be something like, “Sorry I would love to help you with that but I cannot right now because I have my hands full with the deadline for this project.

As with everything there is a balance to be struck of course.

Sometimes it’s in your interests to do someone a favour because one day you might need them to return that favour. That’s reasonable, providing you always retain a primary focus on keeping your main things, the main things.

14. Conclusion:

You should always ensure that you’re making progress towards achieving your big three deliverables and your own goals generally.

It’s perfectly reasonable to have your own agenda and a desire to achieve your own goals and add the greatest value only you can add.

If you want to make a difference, focus on your big three major activities.

Those activities which only you can do.

And to ensure that you’re doing that, don’t be afraid to use the most effective time management tool  of them all whenever necessary. The word NO expressed politely but firmly.

15. Further Reading:

In writing this article the aim was to convince you of the importance of your need for a transformation, should one be necessary for you to achieve better time management.

However you might feel you could use a little extra help. That’s fine and it’s always useful to add a good book to your personal reference library. And one book you might consider on this subject is:-

How to set your Personal Boundaries: Learn to say No and Protect Yourself from Overwhelming Stress by author Josie Baxter

In this book the author Josie Baxter explains in digestible chunks how we can learn to set boundaries and be able to say no when necessary.

She recognises that what should be a simple thing is in fact often quite difficult.

She acknowledges that it’s natural that people care about other people but potentially that can put us at risk if our tendency always is to say yes.

The risk being that we take on too much which can add to our stress levels and stop us from achieving our own goals. In turn this can lead to exhaustion and burn out.

Josie Baxter explains that it’s not selfish to care for ourselves first.

In fact she notes that it’s actually quite sensible.

The advice in this book is useful for all areas of your life and you’ll find it invaluable if you’re someone who struggles to set firm boundaries. It’s an excellent book and well worth considering.

You can take a look at it if you CLICK HERE.

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© Roy Joseph Sutton and Mann Island Media Limited 2019. All Rights Reserved.

How to break a bad habit

How to break a bad habitWhen it comes to bad habits, we can all be guilty, at least to some degree. And many people frequenty consider the question, how to break a bad habit?

Do you have any bad habits dear reader? Now be honest with yourself.

I refer to those little, irritating patterns of behaviour you simply can’t help. Those obsessions you may have occasionally. Perhaps you have one or two bad habits you’d really like to break?

Now habits can be hard to break of course, particularly bad ones.

So here’s another question. Could you break bad habits simply by being more curious about them?

Well the psychiatrist Dr Judson Brewer certainly has an opinion to offer on that issue.

Dr Judson Brewer studies the relationship between mindfulness and addiction and in the TEDTalk included in this post he shares his views on everything from smoking to over-eating to all those other things we do even though we know they’re bad for us.

If you want to learn more about the mechanism of habit development then you’ll find this video interesting and it’s definitely worth watching.

If you have habits you’d really like to break then it would certainly make sense for you to learn more about how you developed those habits in the first place.

The more you understand the better you’ll be able to take action and break those bad habits.

So take a few minutes now and listen to what Dr Brewer has to say. It’ll be well worth a little of your time I promise.

How to break a bad habit:

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How to build confidence and self-esteem

How to build confidence and self-esteemRealizing your full potential would be an excellent definition for success, wouldn’t you agree dear reader?

Unfortunately that’s easier said than done, of course.

For many, if not most, people what’s going on in their head can be the greatest barrier to achieving their full potential. Could you be one of those people dear reader?

You want to achieve success but you’re full of self-doubt?

You don’t believe you’re worthy enough, perhaps?

You just don’t believe you can do it and generally you find it hard to believe in yourself?

And then there’s that old chestnut from which we all suffer occasionally, namely the fear of being found out.

It all boils down to lacking self-belief, a lack of confidence and low levels of self-esteem.

Ultimately all those negative thoughts prevent you from achieving your full potential and they’re a drain on your confidence and self-esteem too.

Negative self-talk not only drains your confidence, it also drains your emotions and it can rob you of the energy you need to work towards achieving your goals and becoming the person you’d like to be. And becoming the incredible person you really could be too.

Within us, we all have enormous potential.

That’s a fact that many people fail to appreciate.

We have so much to offer but for many people that potential goes unrealized.

Essentially many of us just waste so much of the potential we have to offer.

How to build confidence and self-esteemSo how do we become more confident and increase our self-esteem? Now there’s an important question.

The late, great Jim Rohn used to say, “Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.” And he was right in my opinion.

The more you work on yourself, the more confident you’ll become and the greater will be your sense of self-esteem. It really can be that simple.

In the embedded video included below, Oprah Winfrey gives us her views on why it’s important to work on yourself.

And let’s face it, Oprah Winfrey is extremely successful by any measure, so she’s one person to which we should all be listening, or at least those people for whom success is a goal.

If success is your aim, listening to successful people on a regular basis is a very good idea. Find out a few of their secrets and copy them and you’ll be well on your way to achieving and sustaining success yourself.

This is an excellent video and I can recommend it.

Working on yourself:

If this video has roused your curiosity about Oprah Winfrey’s ideas then she’s written many books and they’re all worth reading. You’ll find them all on Amazon. JUST CLICK HERE

DISCLOSURE: This website is an Amazon affiliate. Should you click on the link included in the text above and you then make a purchase, you should be aware that this website will receive a small commission. These commissions serve only to cover the cost of maintaining this site. Your understanding is truly appreciated dear reader. Thank you.

Please share this post with your friends:

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15 Quotes by Elon Musk

Quotes by Elon MuskBorn in Pretoria, South Africa, Elon Musk is a technology entrepreneur and engineer. He holds South African, Canadian and U.S. citizenship and is probably best known as the co-founder, CEO and product architect of Tesla Inc.

In 2016, he was ranked 21st on the Forbes list of the World’s Most Powerful People. Apparently his net worth is around $19.4 billion and he is listed by Forbes as the 40th-richest person in the world.

By any definition Elon Musk is a clever and successful man and of course it’s always worth listening to successful people.

So today I offer you 15 quotes by Elon Musk dear reader.

He’s an interesting character and his observations will certainly get you thinking I’m sure.

15 Quotes by Elon Musk:

  1. I think it matters whether someone has a good heart. ~Elon Musk
  2. I hate writing about personal stuff. I don’t have a Facebook page. I don’t use my Twitter account. I am familiar with both, but I don’t use them. ~Elon Musk
  3. When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor. ~Elon Musk
  4. If you get up in the morning and think the future is going to be better, it is a bright day. Otherwise, it’s not. ~Elon Musk
  5. People should pursue what they’re passionate about. That will make them happier than pretty much anything else. ~Elon Musk
  6. I think that’s the single best piece of advice: constantly think about how you could be doing things better and questioning yourself. ~Elon Musk
  7. There have to be reasons that you get up in the morning and you want to live. Why do you want to live? What’s the point? What inspires you? What do you love about the future? If the future does not include being out there among the stars and being a multi-planet species, I find that incredibly depressing. ~Elon Musk
  8. Some people don’t like change, but you need to embrace change if the alternative is disaster. ~Elon Musk
  9. People work better when they know what the goal is and why. It is important that people look forward to coming to work in the morning and enjoy working. ~Elon Musk
  10. I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better. ~Elon Musk
  11. Man has the power to act as his own destroyer – and that is the way he has acted through most of his history. ~Elon Musk
  12. Really, the only thing that makes sense is to strive for greater collective enlightenment. ~Elon Musk
  13. We can’t have, like, willy-nilly proliferation of fake news. That’s crazy. You can’t have more types of fake news than real news. That’s allowing public deception to go unchecked. That’s crazy. ~Elon Musk
  14. Brand is just a perception, and perception will match reality over time. Sometimes it will be ahead, other times it will be behind. But brand is simply a collective impression some have about a product. ~Elon Musk
  15. In order to have your voice be heard in Washington, you have to make some little contribution. ~Elon Musk

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Did you find these quotes by Elon Musk inspiring and interesting dear reader?

You did? I hope so anyway.

If that is the case then please share them with your friends because when you share everyone wins.

So share them now on social media. If you can do that for me then it will be truly appreciated.

Thank you.

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© Roy Joseph Sutton and Mann Island Media Limited 2019. All Rights Reserved.

15 Quotes by Bruce Lee

Quotes by Bruce LeeBruce Lee is best remembered for his roles in popular martial arts movies of the early 1970s, such as Enter the Dragon.

Born Lee Jun-fan in San Francisco in 1940, he was a Hong Kong-American actor, director, martial artist, martial arts instructor and philosopher brought up in Kowloon, Hong Kong.

Bruce Lee is considered by commentators, critics, media and indeed other martial artists to be the most influential martial artist of all time. He also remains a pop culture icon of the 20th century, who successfully bridged the gap between East and West.

Sadly Bruce Lee died of a cerebral edema in Hong Kong in 1973 but subsequently he was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century.

Despite his untimely death, he continues to influence people and there are several websites dedicated to Bruce Lee around the world.

In his relatively short life he was credited with many inspirational quotes, so I thought today I’d share a few of these with you dear reader.

So here are 15 quotes by Bruce Lee.

Quotes by Bruce Lee:

  1. As you think, so shall you become. ~Bruce Lee
  2. To hell with circumstances; I create opportunities. ~Bruce Lee
  3. Obey the principles without being bound by them. ~Bruce Lee
  4. Knowledge will give you power, but character respect. ~Bruce Lee
  5. Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory. ~Bruce Lee
  6. A quick temper will make a fool of you soon enough. ~Bruce Lee
  7. Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them. ~Bruce Lee
  8. A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer. ~Bruce Lee
  9. If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of. ~Bruce Lee
  10. I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times. ~Bruce Lee
  11. To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person. ~Bruce Lee
  12. The possession of anything begins in the mind. ~Bruce Lee
  13. I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine. ~Bruce Lee
  14. Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it. ~Bruce Lee
  15. Ever since I was a child I have had this instinctive urge for expansion and growth. To me, the function and duty of a quality human being is the sincere and honest development of one’s potential. ~Bruce Lee

Please share this post with your friends:

Did you find these quotes by Bruce Lee inspiring and interesting dear reader?

You did? I hope so anyway.

If that is the case then please share them with your friends because when you share everyone wins.

So share them now on social media. If you can do that for me then it will be truly appreciated.

Thank you.

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35 one-liners about life that are guaranteed to raise a smile

Life? Don’t talk to me about life!

Older readers may remember, that was the expression made famous by Marvin the paranoid android in Douglas Adams’ classic novel, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

I’m sure we’ve all shared Marvin’s sentiment occasionally when we experience life’s more challenging moments.

However positive we are, life can get the better of us sometimes.

So here are some one-liners about life that are guaranteed to raise a smile or two as I’m sure they will resonate with readers.

Life can be absurd at times and it’s difficult on occasions to believe the evidence of our own eyes and ears. Nevertheless our aim must be to remain positive and to do that we must learn to laugh at life and ourselves.

Don’t take it all too seriously. Just laugh as much as you can and that is the perfect counter-balance to Life’s absurdities.

Start now by laughing at all these one-liners which I’ve collected together to amuse and entertain.

One-liners about life:

  1. Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.
  2. Life is a terminal disease.
  3. Youth is wasted on the young.
  4. A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.
  5. Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.
  6. It is much easier to apologize than to ask permission.
  7. We never really grow up we only learn how to act in public.
  8. Being a hypochondriac could save your life one of these days.
  9. Any room is a panic room if you’ve lost your phone in it.
  10. Health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die.
  11. I didn’t say it was your fault. I said I was blaming you.
  12. He who smiles in a crisis has found someone to blame.
  13. I’m really good at stuff until people watch me do that stuff.
  14. Experience is something you don’t get until just after you need it.
  15. By the time a man realizes that his father was right, he has a son who thinks he’s wrong.
  16. Women might be able to fake orgasms, but men can fake a whole relationship.
  17. Just because a road’s well-trodden doesn’t mean it leads anywhere worth going.
  18. As soon as you’re doing what you wanted to be doing, you want to be doing something else.
  19. Stealing ideas from one person is plagiarism but stealing ideas from many people is research.
  20. How is it that one careless match can start a forest fire but it takes a whole box to start a campfire?
  21. We live in a society where pizza gets to your house faster than the police.
  22. You might as well laugh at your problems because everyone else does.
  23. God must love stupid people because he made so many of them.
  24. Dolphins are so smart they can train people to stand at the edge of the pool and throw them fish.
  25. If I was doin’ any better, I’d have to hire someone to help me enjoy it!
  26. Behind every angry woman is a man who has absolutely no idea what he did wrong.
  27. How is it that I always seem to buy the plants without the will to live?
  28. The shinbone is a device for finding furniture in a dark room.
  29. I thought I wanted a career but I realize now that I just wanted a decent income.
  30. Love is telling someone to go to hell and worrying about them getting there safely.
  31. Women will never be equal to men until they can walk down the street with a bald head and a beer gut, and still think they are sexy.
  32. Why is it that most nudists are people you wouldn’t want to see naked?
  33. No one is in charge of your happiness, except you.
  34. Smile. Some people will appreciate it others will be irritated by it. Either way you win.
  35. The pain you feel today will be the strength you feel tomorrow.

Polite request:

So dear reader, did these one-liners about life make you smile?

I hope so. However there are plenty more laughs for you if you click on the links below. You’ll find plenty of smiles to amuse you.

And if you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read then please share it all with your friends on social media. When you share, everyone wins. It’s always a good idea to pass on the smiles.

If you could share it now, I would be ever so grateful. You’d be helping a keen blogger reach a wider audience. Thank you.

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21 favourite quotes to inspire you when you’re feeling down

Favourite QuotesQuotes can be such a source of inspiration, especially when we’re feeling a little down. When everything’s not quite going in the way we’d like, it’s helpful to reflect on the wisdom of successful people.

Successful people weren’t always successful. They started out as ordinary people with a dream and a determination to follow that dream and take it as far as they could.

And in getting to where they are they’ll have met many obstacles along the way and at times they too will have felt a little down.

No one has it that easy. The only difference is that successful people keep going. They never give up.

Successful people make sure they have a source of inspiration for when they need it. They always have something to lift them when times get tough.

When I’m feeling a little down I love to reflect on inspirational quotes. I love them.

Here are 21 of my favourite quotes that certainly inspire me when I’m in need of a lift.

Favourite quotes:

  1. The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. ~Steve Jobs
  2. Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome. ~Samuel Johnson
  3. Every artist was first an amateur. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
  4. Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all. ~Dale Carnegie
  5. Whoever is happy will make others happy, too. ~Mark Twain
  6. You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. ~Christopher Columbus
  7. Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit. ~Conrad Hilton
  8. That’s precisely the question everyone should be asking—why the hell not? Why not you, why not now? ~Timothy Ferriss
  9. The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavour. ~Vince Lombardi
  10. It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are. ~E.E. Cummings
  11. Do not let what you cannot do; interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden
  12. Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently. ~Henry Ford
  13. Use what talents you possess. The woods will be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best. ~Henry Van Dyke
  14. You are what you think about all day long. ~Dr Robert Schuller
  15. The biggest mistake people make in life is not trying to make a living at doing what they most enjoy. ~Malcolm Forbes
  16. Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who are alive. ~Howard Thurman
  17. The most important thing is to be whatever you are without shame. ~Rod Steiger
  18. Courage is like a muscle; it is strengthened by use. ~Ruth Gordon
  19. Do not be afraid to ask dumb questions; they are easier to handle than dumb mistakes. ~Author Unknown
  20. Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them. ~Albert Einstein
  21. What the world needs is more geniuses with humility, there are so few of us left. ~Oscar Levant

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How to be happy in life

How to be happy in lifeHow to be happy in life? Now that’s a question I hear frequently.

Well it’s my belief 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 actually right for you.

Does your work make you happy?

Do you believe your contribution to your job is something which 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 and in all probability your boss will be giving you a hard time too. So in such a 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, it’s true that 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?

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 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 your natural talents and think how you can best apply them.

Be happy in 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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Why an investment in knowledge pays dividends

KnowledgeAn investment in knowledge pays the best interest. ~Benjamin Franklin

You don’t get paid for the hour; you get paid for the value you put into the hour. It’s important everyone understands that important distinction dear reader.

You get paid for the value you add.

The more value you can add the more you will get paid.

It’s that simple really.

If you can solve problems for people with the skills you’ve got then you can earn a very good living.

The question is what underpins your skills? The answer to that question would be knowledge of course.

Knowledge comes from learning and learning is a lifelong process.

The quote at the top of this post from the venerable Benjamin Franklin reminds us of the importance of learning. Learning is an investment in ourselves.

We all have enormous capacity to consume and retain knowledge in our heads and that knowledge is then a currency with which we can trade. The more knowledge we have the more value we can add.

When it comes to investing, nothing will pay you a better dividend than making sure you have a good education.

And it’s not about whether or not you go to college or university. Important as they may be, learning can be achieved in many ways.

Knowledge can be gained through reading books; listening to audio and video tutorials; and challenging yourself to master anything that appeals to you. Learning from hands-on experience, making mistakes and learning the lessons you can take from any mistakes you’ve made.

In particular, if you want to master the game of money and all matters financial then you need to become a seeker of financial knowledge and know-how.

You need to become a reader and a keen student of finance. To be successful in investing, of course you really need to know what you’re doing. You need a financial education.

Ignorance can prove to be very costly indeed. And that’s true in every aspect of your life.

Education may seem expensive but it’s nowhere near as expensive as ignorance.

So, if you’re not already, become a reader.

The investment in yourself is well worth the effort and it’ll pay you a handsome dividend.

As the late, great Jim Rohn once said, “Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.”

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