Life Doesn’t Finish at 25!

We have been brought up in a world that makes us think, that by the time you leave education that you have to have already decided on what you will do for the rest of your life… Even before you have left university, you will of had career meeting upon career meeting to make up your mind on what your calling in life should be.

For anyone that left education before university, at the age of 16 or 18. It is assumed that they will have already decided what their calling in life is. Everyone in this situation will have felt the pressure of society and people around them telling them to “get a job.”

Forget it! I personally think that this approach is foolish. If you have already decided what it is that you will be doing for the rest of your life before the age of education graduation then you are setting yourself up for disappointment, its almost inevitable that you will choose a career path that is purely influenced by the grades that you achieved in your education, not what your interests and passions are. In some cases, purely just because you haven’t found your passion yet.

By being pidgon -holed into a supposed ‘career path’ very early on in your life, maybe having at first, just having accepted it as a method to earn your first full time pay check, it becomes more and more comfortable, and increasingly hard to see yourself doing anything else. Before you know it you will actually have accepted your career fate yourself before you even reach 25! This blog post is going to show you that even if you turn 25 and you are not doing the job that you dreamed about, it is absolutely not too late to keep dreaming and keep driving towards your life goals. You may not even realise your passion yet, but I hope I can show you that even as you mature into adulthood, that you don’t by any means have to accept a mediocre career. You can still find and live your passion and do the work that means something to you.

A recent article on BusinessInsider.com proves my point, here are the jobs that some of the worlds most successful people were doing at the age of 25.

Martha Stewart was a stockbroker for the firm of Monness, Williams, and Sidel, the original Oppenheimer & Co.

Mark Cuban was a bartender in Dallas.

Arianna Huffington was traveling to music festivals around the world for the BBC with her boyfriend at the time.

Lloyd Blankfein was an unhappy Lawyer.

Ralph Lauren was a sales assistant at Brooks Brothers.

JK Rowling came up with the idea for the Harry Potter series on a train.

Jay-Z was already in the rap scene, but was ‘relatively anonymous.’

Marissa Mayer had just started her job as Google’s 20th employee.

Warren Buffett was working as an investment salesman in Omaha.

Ursula Burns started out as an intern, but worked her way up at Xerox throughout her 20s.

Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook was cash positive for the first time and hit 300 million users.

Tina Fey was a child-care registrar at the Y.M.C.A before joining famed improv troupe Second City.

Tim Allen was arrested and served the next two years in Federal prison.

Richard Branson had already started the Virgin Records record label.

Sheryl Sandberg had met mentor Larry Summers and was getting a Harvard MBA.

Eric Schmidt was building a deep background in computer science.

Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was on her way to becoming Florida’s youngest female legislator.

Howard Schultz hadn’t even started out in the coffee business; he was a Xerox salesman.

Chelsea FC cash cow Roman Abramovich had already set up and liquidated at least 20 companies.

As you can see, the overwhelming majority of these 25 extremely successful people where in jobs,  far removed and in most cases in roles that had nothing in common with their ‘calling’ in life. Even the likes of Mark Zuckerberg, who was already in the role that made him who he is today was far from the outstanding success that he is today, having only just made his business cash positive at the age of 25.

Closing Thoughts

As these hugely successful people have proven, don’t feel that you have to have already made your impact on the world by the age of 25! That just because you are doing a particular job today, this doesn’t mean that this is the job you have to do for life. If you own a business that hasn’t quite taken off as you expected just yet, or even had one or two business failures, Roman Abramovich goes to prove that if you learn from these mistakes you can still do alright for yourself!

The one thing that all of these successful people had in common is that even though they hadn’t completely achieved their success in the world by 25, they had the vision that one day they would become successful, and also the perseverance to keep the faith in themselves.

If, as a young person aiming for greatness you find yourself in a current job that you dislike, that doesn’t make you tick. Then simply keep the faith in yourself that you can achieve your life goals someday, if not today.

The Single Way to Become Successful

Suc-cess – (n)

The achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted.

It’s the one answer that pretty much everybody wants to know. “How to be successful?”, in the past plenty of people have had a shot at answering it (ironically with varying degrees of success).

Success applies to every single part of our lives, from our jobs to getting fit, and only you know what it means to you. It may mean that you want a successful career or you may want to be successful in running a Marathon. Whatever it is that you wish to be successful in, this single rule will always apply without fail..

After much thinking, debating and reading I believe I have finally found the single way that you can become successful, and since you have decided to follow Xenium, I feel its only fair that I share this with you.

The Key To Success

Once you have read how to be successful then you will have the same reaction as me, “I already knew that!” but its true what the famous Galileo once said, “You can’t teach a man anything, you can only him to find it within himself” most people already know how to become successful but they still don’t become successful. If you are wondering why, then don’t worry I will explain how success and failure are so closely aligned later on in this post.

So the key to success is simply this:

You have to set a habit of success. 

You need to set yourself a goal to achieve, and then make sure that you stay with it until you achieve it. And I mean really stay with it, you can’t give up you need to just keep persisting until you have achieved your goal. When a runner, runs the London Marathon nearly every single runner hits ‘the wall’ where they think they physically can’t run any more, now this is the moment when the runner decides that they will either become successful in finishing the Marathon by somehow placing each foot in front of the other, until they reach the finish line or try again next year. And the same will happen to you on your Marathon to success, you will come up against a barrier, or something will go wrong in your life, that you may feel makes it impossible to achieve the goal that you set out to accomplish at the start. You too will have to either find some way through that time, some way over that barrier and emerge successful or you will have to try again next year.

A strange thing will happen to the person who manages to complete their journey to success, the next time that they set a goal they will subconsciously already know how to succeed, even if this particular goal is new to them, their mind will have stored a template for success to apply again in another scenario. They will have set the habit of success.

The truth is this statement can be seen in every walk of life. Its no coincidence that people who are successful in one domain will naturally become successful in others, EVEN if they are not even the best qualified for that particular domain… They are just simply people that have learnt how to be successful and are able to duplicate their success and apply it in other domains. The exact same thing happens in the best sports teams around the world, the great Australia cricket team of the late 1990’s and 2000’s beat everyone that they played against, not because they were particularly any more skilful than other teams but just simply because they had learnt how to win and they had gotten in the habit of winning. If you want to be successful then you need to get into the habit of being successful.

“The road to success and the road to failure are almost exactly the same.” Colin R. Davis
However the dangerous thing with setting this habit of success is that it applies equally to failure. Just as you can learn to be successful in a domain and then apply it to other areas, you can equally set the habit of failure and you can find yourself failing at in one goal and then subconsciously failing at other things.
Closing Thoughts
So as young people who want to become successful in life, who want to continuously improve ourselves, who want to beat our own path and inspire people we need to set the habit of success now. Not tomorrow, today! You need to set yourself a goal to achieve and make damn sure that you achieve it… And continuously carry on until you have achieved this goal. If you ever want to escape the 9 to 5 to live a life made of more then you can’t accept mediocrity today because it will lead you to learn to accept  mediocrity in the future and that’s precisely how people have started a career young and then found themselves at 65 getting handed a silver watch, left wondering where life escaped them.
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The Undeniable Reasons That Everybody Can Be Charitable. Even You.

I’m going to be starting the week on a positive note that will hopefully open one or two eyes to be a bit more charitable. “I would love to be more charitable, but I just can’t afford it!” Well, that maybe true but a recent Oxfam report suggested that our level of charitable donations doesn’t increase in line with what we earn. The report found that the top 100 richest earned enough money in 2012 to end world poverty 4 times over, if we did give more in line with what we earn then I’m confident most people would commit to erasing World Poverty if it meant giving away only 25% of their earnings, yet those who had that power, didn’t. To further extend this point, Wafic Said, the Syrian-Saudi businessman accumulated over £1000 million of wealth in 2012, yet gave 40 million to charitable causes, or to put it another way 0.04% of his annual wealth. My point here is not to say that Wafic Said should have given more, indeed it is highly commendable for anybody to give away any money to charity, but that it proves we don’t give more money to charity once we earn more.

Value Donation

“I could write a cheque and never see you again but I wanted to do something more enduring” – Sir Stelios Haji-Loannou.

The most common mis-conception to have about charity is that it is about donating money to established charities. Because of these mis-comceptions, people like you and me will regularly come up with the excuse of not being charitable because we believe we cannot afford it… From now on, make sure that ‘charity’ in your definition does not mean monetry donation, but instead ‘value donation’, the moment that you make this re-definition of ‘charity’ it means that you look at a situation or somebody that requires help and you are able to think about what action or donation would benefit them most or solve the problem they face best, not just jump to the default of donating money. Intrestingly, once you have made this change in mindset then you will start to acknowledge that most situations and people in difficulty actually would much rather your time than your money.

“The generosity of your time is the most valuable gift you can give” – Sara Henderson

I like this quote but what Sara Henderson is probably trying to say is that the gift of your attention is the most valuable gift you can give. I could spend time in a homeless shelter, absent minded, thinking about what I will be doing afterwards, or I could be spending quality time, listening to people tell me about their situations and creating a connection with them. Its clear that indeed, what adds the value is attention not just donating time. Think about this next time that you want you want to do some good in the world, consider where you can add value with spending some time and giving your attention to a situation.

The Usefulness of You

Why you? How are you going to be able to be useful to the people that need charity? Its a very common question to ask yourself. Especially if you are the type of person who likes the sound of ‘doing good’ and helping people through charity, but maybe never have actually done it before, never been involved in a charity or voluteer group. Theres an overwhelming feeling that there surely there will be better people than you to help, that you will just hinder the charities work maybe? The first point to say to anybody that is thinking the same thoughts is to simply just ask a charity, any charity if they would like you to help with something, then listen to the instant response of “Yes!”. That should tell you that you can actually help and that your help is desperately needed, you won’t be hindering the work of anybody by heloing. When considering how useful you can be to the cause, the residing fact is that as long as you are bettering the lives of others and helping them improve thier situations, improving the enviroment or raising the awareness of the next endangered turtle, then you are being a lot more useful than you are just thinking about it. As Charles Dickens succintly puts…..
“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.” – Charles Dickens
Many people in this world believe themselves to not have skills or expertise in a particular area or subject, I have found in my journey so far that so many of these beliefs are unfounded. People come to the conclusion that they can’t do something, or are not useful, have nothing to offer someone else. As a fundamental rule, as long as you can find ways to help others and donate value to their lives even in the smallest of ways then you can never be useless.
The Butterfly Effect
“Even the smallest act of caring for another person is like a drop of water -it will make ripples throughout the entire pond…”― Jessy and Bryan Matteo
It has been suggested that under ‘The Butterfly Effect’ when a butterfly flaps its wings on one side of the world, it causes a hurricane on the other. Personally I would trust Michael Fish’s weather reports more than this theory when predicting hurricanes, but the theory does apply when considering the ripple effects that even the smallest amount of charitable work has. Who’s to say that the hour you spend today helping a young person with a mental illness find a hobby, won’t be a catalyst for changing their lives? We are always told that bad news travels faster than good news but in what can be perceived as a very negative world, an act of kindness and of charity can without doubt ripple through the world of others like a breath of fresh air. This should be your inspiration and fuel for making sure you commit to doing charitable work, however big or small.
Closing Thoughts

So I hope to have opened your mind to  You don’t have to be on the rich list to be a philanthropist, you just need vision and a desire to make a change. It doesn’t matter whether you have £1 or £1 million to give to charity, you can still have a positive impact on your chosen causes.  Money always helps charities, but your own involvement can go a lot deeper and be more rewarding.

Personally I am going to commit to giving away my time to a charitable cause once a month.

“No one has ever become poor by giving.” – Anne Frank

How Thinking BIG Will Change Your Life

“Belief triggers the power to do” – David J. Schwartz, Magic of Thinking Big

Good Morning all..

Today’s lesson on the road to filling yourself with Xenium is all about thinking BIG, and how just this one mind-shift will change your life. David Schwartz decided this topic was so important that he felt it worthy of a whole book, The Magic of Thinking Big. So that should give you an idea of how important this topic is, in the jigsaw of successfulness it is like one of the corner pieces that always gets laid out on the table before anything else, you have to have this in place to work out what comes next.

WTF is Thinking ‘Big’? 

Good question, in its most basic form, thinking ‘big’ is simply having ambition, but having ambition in abundance. It is about embracing the “Realm of Possibility”(I know what you are thinking! “That sounds like something from World of Warcraft”).  This is accomplished by thinking “outside the box” (i.e., in an unconventional manner), and dreaming very ambitious dreams.

What It’s Not.

Now before I start explaining what thinking ‘big’ will do for you, and how it will in particular change your life, let me begin by telling you what it isn’t and what it wont do for you. Thinking ‘big’ is not a short cut to success, its not a quick fix to make you rich and famous. Thinking big is just the first, yet utterly fundamental step to achieving meaningful life goals, goals that will change your life. Think of it as the corners of your life puzzle and then ‘dedication’ makes up the complete picture (regarding the topic of dedication, we will cover that in another post.) This point is, I believe summed up by the quote from Victoria Secret model, Chanel Iman.

“Five years from now I still see myself working hard to get to where I want to be, because I think big.” – Chanel Iman, Model.
(I wonder if thats the first time that David J. Schwartz and a Victoria Secret model have been quoted in the same article?)
Thinking ‘big’ is a long term mentality, its not a quick short cut to get rich or achieve goals. If you are going to be successful then its just something that you are going to have to get used to doing naturally. Later on in this post we will cover how you can work on training this skill, until it just becomes your way of thinking.
The second thing I want to establish is that thinking ‘big’ is not a lie. This isn’t some new age woowoo solely designed to further the careers of dubiously qualified consultants. This stuff actually works, that will unlock real opportunities for you, when you learn to think big you learn to notice what is possible, you will start to achieve things that you thought weren’t possible 6 months ago. If you don’t believe me then go and find someone that in your eyes has ‘made it’, and ask them, “would you be where you are now without thinking ‘big’?” When you have done this then let me know their answer in the comments section below.
How is Thinking ‘Big’ Going to Change Your Life.

“Ordinary people believe only in the possible. Extraordinary people visualize not what is possible or probable, but rather what is impossible. And by visualizing the impossible, they begin to see it as possible.” –Cherie Carter-Scott

Thinking ‘big’ will set you apart from the ordinary and put you in the extraordinary category. It enables you to set yourself extraordinary goals rather than ordinary ones. It will make you see how its possible to run that marathon that you never thought you could, it will make you see the pathways to starting the business that you thought was ‘un-realistic’, it will let you set yourself the goals that will change your life!
When you are aiming to achieve any goal the first step that you need to take is to vividly visualise the image of you achieving it, including all of the emotions, the feelings that you will have once you have achieved it. Once you have been able to visualise what was previously thought of as impossible, it will then enable you to plan how you can work to achieve it. Thinking ‘big’ will help you to do this with extraordinary, life changing goals.
A great example of how thinking ‘big’ has been the catalyst for life changing goals being achieved was Richard Bannister becoming the first person to run a Four Minute Mile back in 1954. Nobody thought it was possible to run a mile inside four minutes, so most accepting this as gospel never attempted it. So it took Richard Bannister to think ‘big’ and to aim to run the four minute mile in order for him to complete it. Funnily enough in the 3 months after Richard Bannister broke this milestone, 4 other people managed the same feat, going to show that this previously regarded ‘impossible task’ was indeed not impossible at all.
Tell Me How to Think ‘Big’
It can be one thing to know you should be doing something, but a whole different ball game actually doing it. I know I need to change my diet to one with more greens and healthy food, I’ve known this for about 3 years… but its only since 3 weeks ago that I’ve actually done anything about it by taking small steps to adjust my diet rather than large, wholesale changes. (Hat tip to Leo Babauta on that one)
Learning how to start thinking ‘Big’ is just that, a learning process, its not like flicking a switch and suddenly a world of possibilities will open up to you. Much like me and my slowly improving diet, you will need to work at this skill, and slowly adjust your mindset to one where you see the possibilities where others see the impossible.
These are some methods that I have used when training this skill. There undoubtedly are others, and feel free to share what’s worked for you in the comments section.
  • Write down a list of the 1o most impressive things that you have achieved in the past 12 months. Look at this list and consider where you could have actually achieved a lot more. Or achieved it much quicker than you did originally. This will show you where you are currently under performing or not reaching your potential.
  • The next time that you set a goal, decide on the parameter of achieving it, Time, Effort and Cost. Then take small amount off the parameters so to make the goal harder to achieve within the parameters. Keep doing this with goals that you set and you will then start to surprise even yourself with what you can achieve.
  • Set yourself a goal that you actually know that you couldn’t achieve .. Something that you genuinely regard as impossible. Then write down three milestones that you would have to achieve in order for this goal to become realised. Then write down the three steps that you would need to achieve in order to realise each of these Milestones and then finally write down again the three things that you would need to do in order to acheive these steps. Now look at all of the mini steps and milestones and think if actually that previously impossible goal is actually now realistic.
Closing Thoughts
The greatest discovery of my generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind.— William James
Here at Xenium, I’m passionate and wholly believe that its you, today’s young generation that have the power to change the world in a positive manner. We have a unique opportunity due to great technological advancements of recent times to communicate and spread action much faster and effectively. However, regardless of any technological change, I think its the changing of attitudes and perceptions that enable this generation to succeed where previous ones have failed. One of those major shifts in attitude and perception has been the tendency to think ‘big’, to push boundaries and test ourselves.
In the above quote William James taps into this new found power and new found knowledge that changing your mindset can change your life. So when are you going to start changing your mindset to thinking ‘big’ and change your life?

Webinar with Scott Dinsmore & Corbett Barr

Good Morning all.

Last week I had the privilege to be included in a private webinar hosted my two of my heroes Scott Dinsmore of Live Your Legend and Corbett Barr of ThinkTraffic. By the way if you haven’t yet subscribed to these blogs then, do it! The topic of the webinar was heavily centred around making connections that matter, something Scott is infectiously passionate about. I have decided to share the wisdom I gained from this webinar with you, in the form of an in-formal summary/review.

The whole webinar was based around Scott’s “12 Uncommon Rules of Making Genuine World-Changing Connections”. If i’m honest I actually entered the talk thinking this could well be a stereotypical “this is how you should give out your business card” kind of webinar. How wrong I was!!

“You are the average of the five people you spend most of your time with” – Jim Rohn

This is one of the founding quotes that encompasses Scott’s philosophy that your success is heavily linked to the success of the people you spend your time with. And its very true, when I look around my own connections and consider the people I spend my time with I can contribute a great amount of my ambitions, thoughts and motivation to them. I know that my girlfriend makes me a lot more responsible for instance, I know that my cousin is one person that can keep me on task when my focus wonders. Equally so, I know that there are people in my life that hold me back, that limit my ambitions, that stop me from achieving. Take a moment to sit down and actually write down the 5 people that you spend most of your time with, then analyse how they affect your life, your mentality. You may be surprised by the results. Now, i’m no one to suggest no longer being friends with the people that negatively affect your life, ambitions and mentality, but just by being more aware of the way that they influence you, you should be able to counter-act  it, or least ignore these negative influences.

The 12 Rules

1) Cultivate the Right Mindset and Reframe Friends – When looking to connect with a new person, or make an introduction. Your mindset needs to be right if you want the best chance to make a positive first impression. Instead of thinking how can this person help me, and thinking of how you can best propose they help you, think to yourself, ‘how can I add value to this persons life’. By adding value to their life, even in the simplest way (Scott emplyed this tactic when he met Leo Babauta, and because Leo had just moved into town, Scott gave him a list of the best restaurants around). Then once you have added this value it will mean that person is even more inclined to do  By doing this, it means you are more likely to build a great connection rather than being a fleeting thought in that persons day.

“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” – Dale Carnegie

2) Create a relationship roadmap & discover who you already know.

I touched on the topic of considering who brings you down and negatively affects your mindset earlier in this post. But for me the most important part of this rule was to think about who you already know that can help you achieve goals. Odds are that you already know someone that could personally help you or they will be able to make an introduction to one of their friends that can. LinkedIn shows this point best, nearly every time I search for someone I want to connect with, it turns out that I already know someone that knows that person and could help me make a meaningful connection with them.

3) Find your story and lead with passion. 

This is one of the most important rules in my opinion, it applies to every aspect of life. You will know yourself that its much more fun to connect and chat with upbeat and positive people so its uber important to be positive and upbeat when you are looking to connect with an important people. One of Scott’s concepts was that of Personal Branding, and I whole heartedly agree that its so important to brand yourself as someone that people want to connect with. You should aim to be the person that lifts a room, that people look to, when they want a positive lift. This concept of Personal Branding extends to social media, its so important that when someone checks you out on Twitter, and then on Facebook that they don’t see two different people.

4) The power of introverts and how shy people can talk to anyone. 

You may think that you are too shy, not out-going enough to make introductions to powerful and successful people, wrong. Some of the most powerful people are introverts. It doesn’t take long reading Zen Habits to see that Leo Babauta is very introvert for instance, yet every week he is connecting and sharing his thoughts with hundreds of thousands of people. In fact being an introvert is extremely powerful, it gives you the golden skill of listening. You will all know someone who you would say still could be heard in a herd of elephants, but the problem is that when you are too busy shouting what you think people want to hear, you can’t hear them tell you what they actually want to hear. By being an introvert, by listening you can show you are interested in others (even if you aren’t!).

5) The 3 second rule.

This was the first rule that Scott went into some of the ‘mechanical’ details on how to meet and connect with people. The 3 second rule was first used as a technique to pick up girls in the book ‘The Game‘. Now Scott wasn’t giving pick up tricks but merely adapting the rule to use to meet anyone, not just attractive members of the opposite sex, as the name suggests, this rule states that when you see someone that you want to meet or connect with, then you have 3 seconds to walk up to them and make an introduction. Why 3 seconds? Because any longer and you will either find an excuse not to make the introduction, or if applied to trying to pick up girls, risk becoming the creepy guys that spends just that bit too long staring at the object of their affection.

6) Find unique ways to help everyone, even the uber successful.

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t get slightly nervous when they are about to make an introduction to someone new, its something that everyone feels to some extent. This has been well documented as the feel of rejection, but these nerves get even stronger if the person that you are approaching is uber successful because us mere mortals naturally may think that we don’t have anything of value to offer someone who’s been there and done it all. Wrong. Everyone of us in the world has unique qualities, unique skills that nobody else on the planet has, all you have to do is find what your strengths are and how best to use them to add value to someone else’s life. As Scott demonstrated, this doesn’t have to be something ground-breaking either, it can just be as simple that you know more about something than someone else, like when Scott gave Leo Babauta a list of local restaurants. It could be that you are extremely good at analysing situations so could use that to write a review about someone’s webinar.. cough cough.. Basically, everyone is an expert and this 6th rule is all about believing in yourself enough to know what it is you are an expert in.

7) Become instantly memorable.

Once you have make a first impression, maybe had a short chat with the person you are looking to connect with and possibly got their contact details. Then its imperative that you follow up on this,  that  you make that person remember you. Also make sure you don’t leave it a week before doing so, my personal rule would be to follow up within 48 hours. This is what will make you stand out from 99% of the people that have met that person that day.

8) Enlist the help of others & one question to explode your connections. 

The first part of this rule really echoes rule number 2, that its more than likely your existing contacts will be able to introduce you to the people you want to meet. But with rule number 8 it really applies to everyone you know. And instead of looking to ask people who they can introduce you to, think yourself who you could introduce one of your connections to, and aim to become an introducing machine. Scott says to aim to at least make one introduction per week. Something I bet none of us will be doing currently! When you do ask someone to introduce you to someone new then you should use the following question, “Do you know someone else that I might be able to help?”

9) Create genuine online connections & find your tribe.

Online it is almost too easy to make connections these days, how much effort does it really take to send a friend request or to even send an email to someone, but as with most things in life ‘you get what you pay for’, so all of these online connections that you are making, you have to ask yourself how much are they really worth. Now im not dis-regarding the value of the internet in making connection but simply this rule states why end witha friend request or an email, get out and try to meet that person if its possible, invite them to a Skype chat and really connect meaningfully. The second thing to note on this point and something that really stood out for myself when listening to Scott was the importance of making the right kind of connections, or as Scott would say, finding your tribe. This effectively means finding like-minded people and getting noticed in the right social circles, both on and offline. So if you are looking to become influential and make meaningful connections in the world of lifestyle design its a idea to become active in forums debating the subject, make sure you are commenting and leaving feedback on the leading blogs about the subject. This applies to any area and any walk of life, if you are looking to make political connections then you will need to find out where those types are already talking and join in the conversation.

10) Build your in-person community & Become a local.

In both the business and personal sides of connecting and networking these days, too many people are neglecting the offline world due to the ease and popularity of online tools to instantly talk to hundreds of people, thousands in the case of Twitter. But if you are looking to make some connections that last, that provide real value then it is imperitive that you don’t disregard the offline world and your in-person connections. The same principles of ‘finding your tribe’ apply however so it is important to become a local within the communities that you wish to make connections in. Scott says that if you become a local within these circles then the connections you are looking for will happen naturally. So why not think about the locations that the people you want to meet are hanging out, whether that be in the business sense or personal sense, so consider both the pub and local resturants in addition to local business breakfast meetings. Make sure you commit to these groups and make your presence felt by personally getting the know people and don’t be the guy who ends up looking like an automatic business card dispenser.

11) Provide unique experiances & create real relationships with influence.

You may notice that a few of these rules do risk repeating the same point, but I like to think of them as describing the two sides of the same coin. So in this rule, its all about cementing the point of quality over quantity, you can do this by providing your connections with some unique experiances. Scott uses the example of when he met Leo Babauta that he offered to show him some of the local running routes, Scott knew this was one of Leo’s interests so it helped create a relationship with real influence.

12) Write people into your world & create lifetime connections

This rule again heavily relates to a few of the other previously stated. The thing that you should take from this rule is to aim to ‘write people into your world’, this means that the connections you make should be so strong that those people could be written into your life and almost be viewed as lifelong friends not connections. The benefits of which don’t need to be explained im sure, I know that personally I would do anything for my close friends, people that have been writen into my life.

Now if you are familular with Scott Dinsmore you will know that theres always a bonus or freebee so onto Rule 13 of 12!

13) Be YOU!

In my opinion, the most important rule of all. Always just be yourself, (a respectful yourself, not quite the sunday morning dressing-gown yourself). The quickest way not to connect with people is to be fake. Nobody wants to be associated or spend time with people trying to be something they are not.

In conclusion then Scott’s rules can be summed up in four main rules I think,

– Make an effort –

– Be Real –

– Care –

-Help Others to Help You –

Some lasting quotes and thoughts from the webinar were left to none other than Mahatma Gandhi.

“First they IGNORE you, then they LAUGH at you, then they FIGHT you, then you WIN” – Mahatma Gandhi

If you are still left wondering quite how making and having strong connections and support around you will actually benefit yourself then answer this question

“What would be possible if the people around you refused to let you fail?”

If you want to learn more about this subject from the man himself Scott is currently running a course called How To Connect With Anyone. You can learn more about it here

Let me know your thoughts about the topics discussed in the comments below.

The average man is a conformist, accepting miseries and disasters with the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain. – Colin Wilson, Author of The Outsider.

The majority of our bright eyed, bushy tailed young selves once would have wanted to be an astronaut, footballer, famous actor or Formula One driver and yet end up asking if ‘you want fries with that.’ 

So what happened to the young footballer or astronaut? They got told many many times to be ‘realistic’. There it is… the one word that kills all dreams. But wait… There are a few people that did become that astronaut and many that became that footballer or famous actor. It appears that the big question here is why? Why did a few people become what they wanted and so many went for more ‘realistic’ (read ‘unfulfilled’) careers? Luck? most definitely. But when you think about it… even the McDonalds worker needed luck to get that job. He was lucky that out of the hundreds of people applying for the job, he was the one to get it. We all need luck in all aspects of our lives, all to often we use it as an excuse to not achieve our goal, or more to the point try to achieve our goals. Personally I think its what the Astronaut didn’t do that set them apart from the McDonalds hamburger flipper, they didn’t accept ‘realistic’, they didn’t accept the everyday miseries and disasters of the game. They didn’t conform.

However being human we never stop dreaming, the majority of the ‘cows standing in the rain’ will still be dreaming. Every time they copy that spreadsheet for ‘the man’ they will still be dreaming of a better tomorrow, The one thing that will stop the majority of those dreams is inertia and the lack of action… Its amazing how many people will dream of retiring early to a desert island and never actually do anything to better their chances of achieving that dream, I think we are all familiar with the concept of ‘If you don’t ask, you won’t get’. And if we want to acheive our goals in life we have to start getting a lot better at asking.

Through trial and error, reading (a lot) on the subject and a little common sense I have found that the only way that we can achieve any goals in life, short term and long term is to plan. Im not talking a 150 page business plan, 3 sentences will be enough in some cases. Now this will depend on the person, some will feel more inclined and comfortable with something more substantial and that’s fine. From the extensive reading I have done on the subject, I’ve come across a lot of bullshit to be honest. A lot of ‘Gurus’ will have you believe its a science to plan… Personally if you stick to something simular to the 3 steps I have listed below you will be well on your way to getting what you want.

  1. Start at the finish – Clearly define what it is that you wish to achieve. Too many people in my eyes ‘start on a road to nowhere’ and in some ways I think this maybe the reason behind Colin Wilson’s quote this post is titled under, people have started on the road and then lost their way and in the lack of direction they “accept (everyday) miseries and disasters”. Once you have defined where it is you want to go, you can always refer to this when struggling for the next step to take.
  2. Set the checkpoints – Write down three milestones that you will need to pass in order to reach the goal. This not only gives you some feelings of acheivement when you reach the milestones but again makes sure that you don’t lose your way on the journey. Something all too easy to do.
  3. Kick Off – Write down three things that you can do today that will get you going on the road. This is I think the most important one of all because it means you have started you’re journey and you won’t forever put it off till tomorrow.

In addition I break it down further that I will then plan the three main checkpoint/milestones that I will need to acheive on the way to the first milestone and then once thats acheived move onto the next and so on. This means that I always only have three things to do on my to-do list at anytime. Which for me is acheivable, something very important to stop inertia and defeatism.

Very importantly, I currently only set goals that are acheiveable within a three month timescale. This helps give you some imputus and stops you from delaying action to the next hour, day or week.

I’ll leave the final thought to Jim Morrision.

“The most loving parents and relatives commit murder with smiles on their faces. They force us to destroy the person we really are: a subtle kind of murder.” 

How it came to this..

I think the first time I realised I was being lied to was at college… even though it most likely started well before that.

I was sat in my careers meeting with a straw haired goofy woman id never met before ‘advising’ me what career path was best for me. I’m sure we have all been in this meeting, and I’m we all were given the same answer, which has to make you question the authenticity of the answer.. Study hard, achieve good grades, be accepted into university and be rewarded with a 9 till 5 job that enables you to live just comfortably enough. I was being advised to ‘play the game.’ And was becoming what the Japanese call a “Sararīman” (Salaryman). 

So it was then that I realised that not, what I wanted my career path to be but what I didn’t want it to be. I left that career meeting knowing I wanted my life to be made of more.

Not knowing exactly what it was that I wanted to achieve, be or do in life however I carried along that beaten, well trodden path that only ever leads to a silver watch at 65 years old beset of life and ambition. But with one grand idea, eventually I will start a business!

In reality, however all I was looking to achieve by doing this, was to have a larger, slightly more tasty section of the same pie. I was still doomed to 40+hours a week, (in reality it would be more like 80+hours) watching the slow office dance to the photocopier and back. I was still playing the game. The reward here however was to eventually be able to retire to a tropical island early. That’s if it all went wonderfully to plan, without a hiccup and the back to back 80 hour weeks didn’t burn me out like a stolen Vauxhall Corsa on a Liverpool council estate first. Still… what other choice do I have

I think most people will be familiar with this feeling of having to choose the lesser of two evils. It leaves me thinking, where did the idea of having to chose an ‘evil’ come from anyway?

So this blog follows my journey to find a new way of thinking and a new way of living. It follows my journey of DatsuSara (the death of the salaryman).