Category Archives: Mindset

5 Ways to Be More Self-Reliant

They say that no man is an island, but it’s just as true that no man should rely on others in his life for things that he could handle on his own!

No matter what field you’re in, developing self-reliance is an important part of being taken seriously and being deemed able to handle the additional responsibilities that come along with promotions and career advancement.  And from a personal standpoint, nobody wants to be the team member who’s seen as being unable to carry his own weight!

If you feel like your self-reliance skills could use a little brushing up, give any of the following ideas a try:

Idea #1 – Take responsibility for yourself

Think about the most self-reliant people you know.  Chances are one of the things that makes them appear so self-reliant to your mind is that they take responsibility for their actions instead of blaming others for their mistakes or misfortunes.

A self-reliant person says, “I’m sorry, I made a mistake and I’ll fix it” – not, “I swear, it wasn’t my fault!”  It’s incredibly easy to take responsibility for yourself when things are going well, but learning to develop self-reliance in the face of challenging situations is much more of a challenge.

To get in the habit of taking responsibility for yourself, pay special attention to your thought and feelings whenever your competence is being challenged.  You’ll probably feel the desire to shift the blame others, but force yourself to stop this behavior.  Instead, get in the habit of accepting blame (when it’s due) and refocusing your energies towards making things right in order to appear more self-reliant.

Idea #2 – Grow your savings account

In many ways, being self-reliant is a mind-set.  When you decide to be responsible for your thoughts and actions, you automatically become more self-reliant than someone who seeks to blame others for his problems.

However, there’s one concrete, measurable way to increase your self-reliance – and that’s by bumping up the size of your rainy day savings account.  Having an extra cushion in the bank allows you to make decisions and absorb unexpected expenses without needing to rely on others to pick up your slack.

Again, developing self-reliance in this way isn’t exactly easy.  If you want to grow your savings, you’re going to have to make some hard decisions about cutting expenses in other parts of your life.  Ultimately, though, being able to rely on yourself to cover surprise costs will more than make up for the challenge associated with setting more money aside.

Idea #3 – Have a plan for everything

A big part of self-reliance is feeling confident in any situation – and in general, you’ll feel more confident in these encounters when you have a plan ready and waiting in your back pocket.

One place to start is with emergency scenarios.  Do you have a plan in place for what you’ll do if you’re confronted with a natural disaster or other emergency at home or at work?  You don’t need to go as far as mapping out routes or buying several months of MREs, but challenge yourself to think through what you’d do if your daily routine was unexpectedly disrupted.

Over time, you’ll find that this attitude of constant planning carries over to other aspects of your life.  As an example, you may find that you’re more comfortable brainstorming “worst case scenarios” for projects at work, leading others to view your professional self as being more prepared and more self-reliant.

Idea #4 – Stay informed

Education is a key part of self-reliance.  The more you know, the better you’ll be able to take care of yourself and confront unexpected challenges.

Within the workplace, staying informed on company politics and changes might give you the heads up on upcoming changes needed to put contingency plans in place.  If, for example, you hear that a major contract has fallen through or that your project may be terminated, staying abreast of internal news may give you the time needed to put an escape plan in place.

Without the pursuit of this necessary information, you won’t be able to act in a self-reliant way in order to protect yourself and your livelihood.

Idea #5 – Learn new skills

By most definitions of the word, true self-reliance includes things like foraging for your own food and sewing your own clothing out of handmade fabrics.  And while you can definitely take self-reliance to this “Doomsday Prepper” level, start your journey to self-reliance by focusing on skills that are more relevant to your daily life.

For example, are there any tasks at work that you rely on others to do that you could learn to handle yourself?  If you rely on others to send you data sets for analysis, is there a way you could pull this information on your own?  Or if your department relies on another for certain materials, is there a way you can help to expedite the process?

As a rule, the more skills you have, the better you’ll be able to take care of yourself in whatever situation may arise.  And, really, it doesn’t get much more self-reliant than that!

Practicing Calmness: Maintaining Control in Difficult Situations

Unfortunately, when it comes to facing stressful situations, Master Yoda, you are not.  Developing the type of Zen-like calm that will enable you to exit trying circumstances gracefully isn’t easy to do, but it’s vital.  If you’re prone to outbursts of anger or tears whenever you feel threatened, learning how to remain calm will ensure that you’re taken seriously in both your professional and personal lives.

So if you’re sick of being dismissed by others or feeling that you’ve let your anger get the best of you, consider the following 5-step process for managing your emotions in stressful situations:

Step #1 – Acknowledge when you’re feeling stressed

As usual, the first step to resolving a problem is to admit that you have one in the first place.  After all, you can’t learn how to maintain control in difficult situations if you aren’t able to identify when your reactions are getting out of hand.

Generally, there are a few key symptoms we can use to assess when stress is occurring.  Our pulses increase, our faces flush, our hands begin to shake and we feel a rush of emotion – whether anger, teariness or some other strong feeling.

The key to managing difficult situations is to detect these symptoms at their onset, before you become so overwhelmed that a graceful exit is no longer possible.

Step #2 – Excuse yourself from the situation

Now that you know which symptoms indicate that you’re becoming stressed, practice excusing yourself from difficult situations as soon as you notice them.  If you delay and try to force yourself to regain control, you’ll typically only compound your emotional response – making you even less likely to come out of the scenario in a calm, controlled way.

To do this, use the following template:

“I’m sorry.  I’m feeling [stressed, upset, angry, etc] because of [this situation].  Could we regroup in [a certain period of time] once I’ve had a chance to think more clearly?”

Sure, there are some situations that you won’t be able to get out of, but you’ll likely find that these are few and far between.  Most people will respect your ability to advocate for your own needs and will give you the space necessary to gain control of your emotions privately.

Step #3 – Analyze your frustrations

Once you’re alone, take a few moments to think about why you experienced the reaction you did, putting a particular focus on your personal emotions and rationale.  For example, complaining to yourself that, “My boss is such a jerk,” doesn’t give you much to go off of, since you can’t do much to change your boss’s personality.

However, what you can do is to identify which of the elements of your earlier encounter are making you upset.  As an example, while your boss might truly be a jerk, you might also be able to identify that what’s really got you frustrated is the way he gives your co-worker better assignments than you ever seem to receive.  Knowing exactly what’s got you upset will go a long way towards helping you to brainstorm potential solutions and eventually change your mood.

Step #4 – Identify potential solutions

Following with the example above, if you’ve identified that you’re upset over perceived favoritism, it’s now on you to explain to your boss that this is how you see the situation.  And quite frankly, that conversation is going to go over much better if you can pair your observations with some practical ideas for solutions.

In this case, you could be missing out on prime opportunities because your boss thinks you’re too busy to handle them.  As a solution, you could offer more frequent check-ins or ways that other priorities could be handled more efficiently in order to free up your time for higher profile projects.

Of course, not every difficult situation has a solution.  Your boss might just not like you, and if that’s the case, no amount of calmness is going to resolve the scenario you’re facing (though you might also take that as a hint that it’s time to find a new job…).  But really, nine times out of ten, excessive displays of emotion can be avoided by taking the time to calmly think through what’s really bothering you and what can be done to improve your situation.

Step #5 – Carry out necessary follow-up professionally

Finally, if you promised anyone involved in the difficult situation you faced initially that you’d follow up with them at any point, now’s the time to do so.  Don’t let your discomfort prevent you from sticking to your word, as that’ll do much more damage to your reputation in the long run.

With consistent practice, you may find that you don’t even need to excuse yourself and follow up with the people in your life at a later time.  As you practice keeping your cool when faced with difficult situations, you’ll find that you’re able to identify your core emotions and deal with them in a calm, rational way in the moment, preventing your feelings from ever getting out of control in the first place.

Can You Change Your Mood?

Ever heard somebody utter the phrase, “Somebody must have woken up on the wrong side of the bed!” in your general direction?  Not only is it hugely irritating to be reminded that you aren’t feeling bright and cheery – the statement itself seems to imply that your mood is set and that nothing can change it.

I disagree.  Personally, I think that our minds are a reflection of the thoughts we choose to dwell on – which makes it entirely possible to change a bad mood to a good one if you find yourself battling a sometimes-grouchy demeanor.

The following are a few of the different techniques I’ve either used or heard about that can be used to reset your mood to a happier state:

  • Aim for gratitude

Often times, I find that my bad moods stem from feeling deficient in some area.  Maybe I wish that my business was further ahead, that I was wealthier or that I was in better shape.  Even if these thoughts are unfounded, they can really get me down!

In these cases, taking the time to be grateful for the things I am fortunate to have puts me in a better mood every time.  To really put things in perspective, I’ll try to take some action that solidifies this gratitude – whether that’s making a list of things I’m thankful for, writing a thank you note to someone who’s helped me or some other task that helps me feel better about where I’m at now.

  • Put on your favorite song

We all have songs that make us feel happier overall (plus songs that get us down – avoid these at all costs!).  Blasting these “feel good” tunes can make a big difference in lightening your mood.

  • Get some “touch time”

Believe me – I’m not trying to be dirty here.  In fact, studies have demonstrated that engaging in touch – whether that’s getting a massage, petting a dog or simply holding hands with your spouse – helps to lower blood pressure, improve the stress response and improve your overall mood.

  • Do something you love

If your bad mood is preventing you from getting your work done, take a break and do something you love.  If you love playing video games, take a 15-minute break away from whatever’s stressing you out to shoot some zombies.  If you play a musical instrument, a 10-minute jam session might be all you need to help you turn your mood around and get back to business.

  • Do something healthy

It’s no secret that exercise raises endorphin levels, which improve your mood and make you feel better overall.  Really, I’ve found that very few things turn my bad days into good days than a hard gym workout.  If you’re feeling down or angry, a long run, a kickboxing class or a weight lifting session might be all you need to start feeling better.

  • Try a new food

Sometimes changing things up with one sensory system – in this case, experimenting with new tastes – is enough to promote adjustments in other bodily systems.  And really, if you go out of your way to make sure the new food is one that you’ll enjoy, why wouldn’t you be in an instantly better mood?!

  • Sniff a lemon

Okay, I can’t personally say that I’ve tried this one, but I’ve seen it recommended in a few different places.  Basically, the idea is that the fresh, citrus scent promotes a positive mood – but I’ll leave it up to you if you want to try this one…

  • Stare at something blue

The idea that different colors promote different emotional responses is pretty well-established and, in this case, blue is important because it’s the color of relaxation.  Really, this is why therapists often recommend that patients stare at the sky in the hopes that its blue color will provide a calming effect.

To achieve these benefits for yourself, try putting on a blue shirt, sitting in a blue room or tucking yourself under a blue blanket.  Not only will you be warm and cozy, you’ll find yourself in a better mood as well!

  • Volunteer

This one goes along with the ‘expressing gratitude’ idea listed above, but really, if you want to put it into perspective exactly how lucky you are, spend some time volunteering.  The process of helping other people in the world to benefit their situations can be a huge mood booster, while also providing valuable services to the less fortunate in your area.

  • Put a smile on your face

Finally, if you’re feeling down, try plastering a smile on your face – no matter how awful you feel!  You’ll think that you look silly at first, but eventually, you’ll find that your mood begins to turn around and your interactions with others around you improve.

What do you do when you’re feeling down?  Share your best mood changing techniques in the comments section below!

3 Tips for Developing Unflappable Self-Esteem

You don’t need to have the looks of Brad Pitt, the sense of humor of Louis CK or the style of Marc Jacobs to be naturally self-confident!  In fact, with a little extra effort, it’s possible to develop the unflappable sense of self-esteem that’ll help you to advance in both your business and personal lives.

Here’s how to do it…

Tip #1 – Focus on yourself

One of the absolute worst things you can do to trash your self-esteem is to continually compare yourself to others.  Granted, it’s hard not to do this every so often, but the reality is that if you’re constantly trying to live up to the ideals you see in other people, you aren’t focusing on all of the natural talents that you bring to the world!

(And really, even the people you idolize in your life are facing their own struggles and their own self-esteem issues!)

A far better approach is to focus on yourself.  Spend time learning what your unique skills and strengths are, and then take the time to hone them.  If you’re talented musically, dedicate your spare time to learning and mastering instruments.  If you love computers, take classes and read books that allow you to expand your skill set and produce better work.  Over time, you’ll naturally develop a high level of self-esteem simply because you know you have these valuable skills!

If you must, use others in your life who possess the qualities you’d like to see in yourself as inspiration –but be sure you’re using their examples for guidance only and not for emulation.  Be your own person, and invest more time in developing your unique gifts than trying to mimic someone else!

Tip #2 – Keep a log of successes

Even the most self-confident people wake up to bad hair days, screw up projects at work and fall victim to a whole host of other “downers” that can trash their self-esteem.  And if you aren’t yet a self-confident person, you may find that these stumbling blocks lead to lowered self-esteem, sadness or other negative effects.

The solution here is to keep an ongoing log of your successes.  This way, you’ll have something to reference in order to build yourself back up whenever you’re feeling low.  To do this, set up a Google Document and create a live form tied to the document (see complete instructions on how to do this here) that asks the following questions:

  • What one thing can you brag about today?
  • What one thing are you grateful for today?
  • What one thing do you desire today?

Take the time to complete this form every night before you go to bed.  Then, whenever you need an extra boost of self-esteem, reference your Google Document for a list of all your past successes.

Tip #3 – Practice assertive behaviors

Sure, some people are born naturally self-confident.  But for the rest of us, learning to build self-esteem and be more assertive in our daily lives is just like any other skill – it must be practiced and wielded before it can be used successfully!

To practice being more assertive as a way of developing unflappable self-esteem, start by visualizing three recent situations in which you felt unconfident.  For best results, make these memories as vivid as possible by reimagining every detail of the scene in your mind.

Once you’ve put yourself in this scenario, try to look at your behaviors and responses objectively.  How is your posture?  Is your body language subconsciously sabotaging your attempts at being perceived as self-confident?  Do the words you’re saying sound like they’re coming from someone with high self-esteem?

Don’t be too harsh on yourself, but do try to fully understand how and why you reacted the way that you did.  Once you’ve fully analyzed your behaviors, re-envision the same scenes while imagining how you could have responded in a way that would be perceived as more self-confident.

To do this, revisit the questions you asked yourself in the earlier exercise.  Imagine your posture straightening, your body language being brought under control and that the words you’re saying come across as collected and confident as you can imagine.  Really try to visualize yourself enacting these assertive behaviors until your mind has made the connection between actions that might be perceived as less than confident and more positive ones.

You may also find it helpful to use an “anchor” in these situations.  By pairing your visualizations of assertive, self-confident behaviors with a specific physical cue or mental image – for example, squeezing your thumb or envisioning a certain color – you’ll be able to fire your anchor in situations where your self-esteem is lagging, prompting your mind to make the connection back to the assertive behaviors you’ve practiced.

Over time – and with continued practice – you’ll find that you’re better able to call up a self-confident mindset, enabling you to present yourself as someone with effortless, unflappable self-esteem.

Assertive versus Aggressive: Which Side are You On?

Learning to behave more assertively is an important part of being successful in life.  Whether your newfound assertive behaviors enable you to push for that big salary raise you’ve deserved for years or simply to command more respect from your peers and colleagues, identifying and modeling assertive behaviors is a great way to improve your overall life and your well-being.

Unfortunately, those who attempt to be perceived as more assertive must walk a careful line between positive, influential assertiveness and brash, unprofessional levels of aggression.  If you aren’t aware of these distinctions – thus allowing your behavior to skew too far into aggressive territory – you risk damaging the relationships that more assertive behaviors would build up.

So as you attempt to become more assertive in both your personal and professional life (or, if you’re afraid your behavior already treads too closely to the aggressive slant), keep the following distinctions and practices in mind…

Aggressive people are often defined as such by the specific body language, vocal inflections and conversational techniques they use.  If you take a second to imagine someone you consider to be “aggressive,” your chosen example will likely exhibit intrusive body language (for example, inhabiting your “personal space,” gesticulating wildly and so on) and make use of harsh, authoritative tones when speaking.

Another key marker of aggressive behavior is “conversational dominance,” in which the aggressive party attempts to gain control of a conversation through rapid-fire questions designed to establish authority and dominance over the submissive party.  In my, “How to be a Dominant Alpha Male” article, I showed exactly how you can throw off this behavior, but for now, it’s important that you recognize this attempt to gain control as an example of how aggressive people behave.

Assertive people, on the other hand, don’t rely on flashy hand gestures, commanding tones or conversational tricks in order to emphasize their dominance.  Instead, the hallmark of an assertive person is his confidence.  An assertive person doesn’t need to resort to intimidation tactics to make his point – instead, it is the conviction behind his thoughts and statements that draw others to his side.

If you picture an assertive person in your mind, this self-confidence likely manifests itself in a number of different ways.  Assertive people tend to speak more slowly using level, even tones and demonstrate assertive body language that neither intimidates nor indicates submission.  Being in the presence of an assertive person doesn’t feel threatening in the same way sharing the company of an aggressive individual can.

Now, whether your past behaviors have led you to be perceived as a nice pushover – rather than the assertive person you’d like to be seen as – or whether you’ve strayed too closely to outright aggression in the past, it is possible to come across as more assertive.  However, you’ll need to put some serious effort into modeling assertive behaviors for this exercise to be a success.

In general, the best way to be perceived as being more assertive is to model the behaviors you define as “assertive.”  In other words, you’ve got to “fake it until you make it”!

So how can you fake being assertive?  Try incorporating

  • Tone of voice – Assertive people don’t raise their voices unnecessarily, but they also don’t mumble and stutter so much that they aren’t take seriously.  If you’ve struggled in the past to add a tone of authority to your voice, simply pretend!  Act as if you’re portraying an assertive speaker in your daily interactions and you’ll be amazed at how quickly you adopt these vocal inflections as your own.
  • Word choice – Many times, it’s not just the tone of our speech that undermines our assertiveness, but the specific words we use as well.  Submissive speakers apologize unnecessarily, attribute great ideas to others and generally try to deflect attention away from themselves.  As a newly assertive person (at least, in your mind), mimic the language used by other assertive people in your life in order to be taken more seriously.
  • Body language – Assertive personalities appear comfortable in their bodies.  They don’t fidget constantly with their fingers, twirl their hair or slouch forward in a subconscious effort to deflect attention away from their words or appearance.  To eliminate these “giveaway” signals and encourage others to perceive you as more assertive, roll your shoulders back, lift your chin slightly and keep your hands steady.
  • Eye contact – Assertive people make eye contact in a way that’s reassuring, not threatening.  To adopt this behavior as your own, don’t shy away from eye contact with other people, but also be careful not to hold another person’s gaze so long that you come across as aggressive.

At first, acting assertive when you’ve only known yourself as a more submissive personality can be challenging.  However, with continued practice, you’ll begin to adopt these assertive behaviors and traits as your own – to the point where you’ll hardly be able to remember your previous life as an aggressive or submissive personality!

Image: sidknee23

Fake it ‘Til You Make it: How to Convince Others You’re Confident

Are you frustrated by feelings of low self-esteem, inadequacy and shyness?  Do you struggle seeing “naturally” confident people and wish that – just once – you could feel like they do throughout your daily life?

Well get over yourself!  Really, there are very few people in the world who are born confident.  For the rest of us, becoming more confident is something that we must work towards through careful, conscious self-analysis and repeated effort.

This might sound a bit touchy-feely, but the reality is that if you want to be perceived as more confident, you’ve got to take a good, hard look at how you present yourself to the world, as well as how you can consciously alter your behaviors to appear more confident.

But before we can begin this process, it’s important that you understand how powerful communication really is, as well as how you can wield it more effectively.

True communication extends well beyond the words that come out of our mouths.  It encompasses the personal style we choose to project, the body language and mannerisms we put forth, as well as the sub-conscious cues we give to others about our personalities and mental states.

As an example, try to remember the last time you met someone new.  Chances are you took in a great deal more detail about this person than you might initially think.  Beyond the specific words he used, you probably also noticed how he was dressed, what his demeanor was like and how comfortable you felt around him.  Each of these specific elements occurred because of the communication this person was using.

Now, reverse this situation.  Whenever you encounter new people – or even interact with the people you already know – they’re interpreting this same information about you.  If that thought makes you feel overwhelmed, don’t worry.  Though the thought of others subconsciously processing so much information about you might seem scary, the upside is that being aware of this process gives us the opportunity to control our communications and appear more confident.

To start doing this effectively, begin with an NLP exercise called “Shifting Perceptual Positions.”  Essentially, through this activity, you imagine your own past behaviors from three positions – your own point of view, the point of view of your conversation partner and from the point of view of an outsider.

Start by calling up the memory of a past situation in which you felt uncomfortable.  Try to recreate in your mind every detail of the encounter.  What were you wearing and how did these clothes make you feel?  What specific words did you say?  How did you say these words and where did you stumble in your conversation?  What can you remember of your body language?

At first, try to recreate the experience from your own point of view and highlight the specific instances where you felt you weren’t coming across as confident.  Then, imagine how the person you were interacting with viewed the situation.  To change your point of view, envision yourself interacting with the less confident you – again, making note of instances where you perceive this version of you coming across as uncomfortable.

Finally, imagine the entire process a third time from the point of view of an outsider.  If you randomly came across two people interacting in this way, what conclusions could you draw about the participants?  What specific behaviors do you notice that makes one party appear less confident than the other?

Hopefully, examining a specific past experience in this way should give you a good idea of a few potential behaviors that can be changed in order to make you appear more confident.

To bring about these specific changes, we can use what’s known as the NLP “swish pattern”.  Through the use of this exercise, you’ll enable your mind to quickly “swish” between unconfident and confident behaviors, allowing you to appear more assertive in any situation you’d like.

The first step in this process is to clearly envision one specific instance where you felt awkward or uncomfortable in your mind.  Make it a single snapshot that embodies all of the behaviors you feel are preventing you from being seen as unconfident.  Fully experience this moment, allowing yourself to feel the physiological symptoms of anxiety, the sense of embarrassment and the feelings of low self-esteem that define the “less confident” you.

Now, set that picture aside, and create a different image in your mind – one of you coming across as assertive and confident in your interactions with others.  If you can call upon a particular memory in which you felt this way, that’s great.  If not, create your own vision of what confidence feels like, allowing yourself to experience every element of this sensation.

Once you have these two images in your mind, go to a neutral place and relax for a few minutes before calling up the first mental image.  Then, switch the pictures in your mind while saying the word “swish.”  Repeat this process several times until the positive image begins to feel more natural to you than the negative one.  Whenever you find yourself feeling uncomfortable, repeat this mental “swish,” and you should immediately be transported to a state of mind that allows you to act in a confident manner, in any situation.

Image: Victor1558

Have You Heard of The Snowball Effect?

The snowball effect was originally an analogy that was used to describe the Great War. It simply means something of little to no significance building up to become miraculous and great. Snowball, was also the title for a book written about Warren Buffet.  He started out as not a big deal and then worked his butt off to eventually become one of the most powerful men in the world (one the richest).

Like a snowball, most of you are starting you careers or experiences with small significance. By that I don’t mean what your doing has no value because obviously it does. What I mean is that you probably have little to no power right now and will continue to have no power for a while. To become the all mighty powerful snowball, you must go down the right path.

A small snowball which is placed on a steep hill will go down much faster and collect more snow and become much bigger a lot quicker than if it weren’t a steep hill. Basic laws of physics.  However, the faster the snowball goes down the hill, the harder it will be to control the snowball toward the end of the path thereby possibly being destructive.

If you get rich to quick or too fast, you might lose control and be headed down a path of utter disappointment. It’s interesting to see that many people who win the lotto end up going broke shortly after.  Everything happens so quickly that they almost instantly lose sight of how things work.  It’s always better to go down the not so steep hill of life so you can progressively:

  • Get rich slowly – learn amazing experiences that will help you to be better off for longer durations, compared to being rich quick, loosing quick, and then trying to be rich quick again.
  • Create powerful connections – powerful connections will be very useful in various stages of your life including times when you want to go to the next level.
  • Build creditability – Your creditably is important because it’s how the public or masses view you. Your credibility can also help take you to the next level or help you in time of crisis.

Would you agree the snowball effect theory being valid? Do you find yourself on a slope too steep?

The 6 Steps to Mastery


One of my favorite mentors during the beginning of my personal development career was a guy by the name of Matthew Ferry. I’ve learned many amazing concepts about the law of attraction, the universe, synergizing, and several others. However, one of the most concepts I’ve ever heard was the six steps to mastery.

1. Formulation

  • Create a clear vision for your goals
  • Make a decision as to what you want
  • Create a step by step plan
  • Look into who needs be involved with you
  • Make an announcement about your intention to anybody and everybody (the universe)

2. Concentration

(Since habits take time to create… this stage will take you close to 90 days before you can move on the next)
  • Start taking action (get to work)
  • Work with your plan (modifications or small changes)
  • Get the ball rolling
  • Consistency is what will be the decisive factor to take you to the next phase [critical]
  • You’ll be doing a lot of work and see little to NO RESULTS
  • This phase is compared to you being a hamster on a wheel

3. Momentum

(This stage can take you anywhere from 2-6 years before moving on to the next)
  • This is the phase where you’ve learned a few tricks allowing you learn effectiveness
  • You finally start to see some results
  • The following phase begin to inspire you, Stabilization

Momentum KILLERS:

  • No system or lack of structure
  • Ego (Dam I’m good! Check me out now!)
  • Momentum killers can take you back a phase as they slow down your growth

4. Stabilization

(You can end up spending many years in this stage… or the next stage will just happen “all of a sudden)
  • Repetitious Boredom you find yourself not caring as much as you use to when you prospect for new business
  • You finally have systems in place that allow you to become automated
  • You have a strong structure with statistics and predictable numbers
  • Consistency*
  • Organization and constant planning
  • Empowering other to manage your systems (delegation)
  • Big results happen in this phase

*Don’t change things that are working
*Don’t experiment unless there is a reliable system in place.

5. Breakthrough

(After a breakthrough, you will go back into stabilization mode…. this will happen over and over again for many years)
  • Sudden or unpredictable bursts of results
  • Everything begins to speed up
  • You must stay calm and simply deal with the power and velocity
  • Your communication skills becomes one of your most vital tools (staff, customers, affiliates)
  • Be certain everything around you is supported and organized
  • Your breakdowns will become opportunities for you to go through break throughs
  • After you have your breakthrough, you must go back into stabilization

6. Mastery

(Nearly impossible. only a handful or small percentage of people reach this phase… you can refer to the 10,000 hours rule as an reference to how often someone really achieves this level)
  • Excellence is achieved
  • Do nothing and have everything occur
  • Everything delegated
  • The business has a life of its own
  • Everything is done by people who are better than you

Set Backs

(setbacks are inevitable. Here are the causes and consequences)

1. Breakdowns

(Having breakdowns is the only way to have a break through. Success usually happens right before everything seems as if it’s maxed out. However, If you don’t have a breakthrough, you don’t experience the spontaneously amazing results and go back to working in the stabilization phase.)
  • You aren’t doing the things that got you into the momentum
  • You stop following your routines, schedules, and processes
  • You become distracted by things that may seem like they are important
  • You stop following your plans and begin to break promises

2. Disasters

(Disasters will take you back by two phases as they ultimately sabotage your systems.)
  • Managing emergencies instead of processes
  • Stopped doing the plan a while back
  • Stopped following a schedule, routine, or rituals
  • Started lying or hiding the truth about daily activities
  • Lack of communication

Achieving the phase of Mastery would be every entrepreneur’s dream. Are you will to do whatever it takes? Which phase would you consider your in right now, and why?

How to be a Dominant Alpha Male

So I have had a flood of requests from the male readers among you asking recently how to appear and come off as more powerful and in control. It really is a terrific question and this article is hopefully going to help you to bring out your true self. You see, we are all powerful just in different areas. (The computer programmer who seems timid and meek when talking with women suddenly becomes a powerhouse of confidence when put in front of a computer and told to program!) So this article is about taking that confidence and teaching you how to project it in all situations of your lives.

The Body is a Temple

We all hate the word’s body language. Assuredly you had some stupid seminar in high school or read a boring book assigned to you that explained how you should act and give off good body language. Well, lets make this a little more fun than that shall we? Here are my top four tips for using your body to appear confident and in control.

1) Take Up Space

You should never be standing less than about a shoulder width and a half apart. The best stance to take up is legs spread apart. (But be aware that this may seem aggressive so make sure to compliment this stance with a relaxed or even smiling expression.)

2) Shoulders Back and Relaxed

Don’t hunch and let your shoulders relax. We are very good at picking up when people are tense and the two places where we tense the most (in uncomfortable situations) are the jaw and shoulders. If you have a problem relaxing your shoulders take your hands and put them behind your back. Walk that way. It is considered elegant and powerful and will automatically broaden your shoulders and chest.

3) Smile

Confident people are smiling because they aren’t worried and are comfortable in that situation. Now I don’t mean a wide ear to ear grin like a flaming idiot, but rather a gentle relaxed smile of acknowledgment when interacting with another person. Seriously, work on your smile and get one that compliments your face. Yes, as lame as it sounds, stand in front of a mirror and work on a smile that you feel makes you look confident.

4) Chin Up

Confident people have their heads up (exposing their necks slightly. The reason we see this as confident is because evolutionarily we are programmed to protect our necks, a confident man who knows he can take care of himself isn’t going to be worried about that and will have no problem exposing his neck.) Be careful not to have your head in the sky however, everything in moderation gentlemen.

5) Limit Large Hand Motions

A certain amount of hand motions are good, it adds to the story and makes it easier for people to follow you, however at a certain point it becomes overboard. Studies have continuously shown that people who are higher class and more confident severely limit their hand motions when they are having an interaction. Keep this in mind- if you are reminding people of Chandler when you talk it might be time to change.

Powerful Interactions

So confident body language is really only the first step although it is a huge one! (Furthermore, studies by Paul Ekman have shown that if you adopt a certain body language your mindset will change to reflect your body language. So if you are uncomfortable in a certain setting, but your body language is confident, you will actually feel more confident!) However, here are some further tips that are going to really help you to be seen as confident and charismatic.

1) Speak Slowly

There are two reasons why people speak quickly: a) They are uncomfortable, b) They are very comfortable but their cognitive process is particularly fast and therefore they speak quickly to try to get everything out that is on their minds. Sadly, only psychologists (and now you) know about reason b. Everybody else assumes that if you are speaking quickly it is because you are nervous!

2) Pause

This is considered a really hypnotic technique and it is used by pretty much every professional speaker in the world. They pause at certain points in order to continuously capture and keep your interest. Use this. (You can even take a quick drink in the middle of a sentence! You are SO (takes drink) Funny!

3) Walk as if You are Busy

You can always tell an important person by the way they walk! When you are walking about town move with purpose and precision and I promise you this will cause people to sit up and pay attention.

4) Lean Back

The person who is the most leaned back is the person who is the most powerful in that situation so the more leaned back you can be do it. This includes leaning back against a wall, allowing yourself to relax in a chair, the key thing here is to be relaxed! Remember, relaxed people are confident and powerful people!

Active Power

Now for the fun part of the article:

1) The Handshake

Make sure that when you shake somebody’s hand, your palm is to the floor. This will make somebody automatically feel dominated (which will make them automatically adhere to what you say with amazing accuracy!)

2) Verbal Power

There is something called conversational dominance which is a way of making sure that you aren’t conversationally dominated by another person. Basically, powerful businessmen (and women) will try to dominate you by asking you a string of questions, the more you answer, the more under their spell you shall fall. So how do you protect against it?

Well when somebody is trying to dominate you conversationally they will ask you questions and expect you to answer them very quickly. (Now this is not to be mistaken for genuine curiosity.) I remember I was at a hotel networking event with my father and we met an old friend of my fathers. The man was very dominant, very hocker (Yiddish for salesman) like and he immediately asked me, “How old are you?” and I came right back and said, “How old do you think I am?” and the man went, “Whoaaaa! We got a slick one here!”

He had tried to dominate me and I didn’t let it happen, I deflected it by not answering but not insulting him at the same time. People will try to dominate other people by quickly asking them lots of questions and the more you answer the more under that persons control you will fall. (Psychologically and unconsciously of course. Not physically.)

So how does it work? Well, during the first five minutes of an interaction, when you are asked a question like, “Where are you from? What do you do? How old are you?” you are going to answer in one of two ways:

  • By making them answer a question for you first: Meaning, you can absolutely tell the person how old you are! But first make them guess! Make them do something for you before you do something for them. This is very important and it will start allowing you to be seen as attractive to women and powerful to men!
  • Answer in a fun way: “Where are you from” Im actually from a little cardboard box on the side of the road etc. (Credit: Erik Von Markovick).

If you are ever at a loss or don’t have something particularly witty to say just say, “Guess”. If you say this with conviction and confidence then people will guess for you and therefore you have successfully taken control of their subconscious minds.

Think It, Act It, Become It

By the time he was 13-years-old, Steven Spielberg knew he wanted to be a movie director.  When he was 17, he visited Universal Studios as a tourist. Too much for him to handle, he sneaked away from the group and onto a sound stage where a movie was being filmed.  Finding the head of the film editing department, the young Spielberg talked to him about making films. The next day, Spielberg put on a suit, borrowed his father’s briefcase, and walked onto the lot as if he belonged there. He found an abandoned trailer and painted Steven Spielberg, Director on the door.  He spent his entire summer working on the lot and learning everything he could about the movie-making business.

In time, Spielberg became a studio regular, produced a short film, and eventually was offered a seven-year contract. Knowing what you want and pursuing it with great passion will help you to become that.  Since your beliefs determine your actions and your actions determine your results, it makes perfect sense that a positive outcome is affected by a positive attitude.  The most powerful words you can speak are the ones you say to yourself.  I have developed a three-step plan to help you stay motivated and inspire you to create your future.  I call it the T.A.B. Plan.  (I like to use acronyms because it helps me to remember each step.)  Think It, Act It, Become It.  This three-step plan works for everything you do.


Anything you can conceive, you can achieve. The very moment your mind conjures up an image, a dream, a visualization, you are one step closer to making that become a reality. When you have these thoughts, you are setting a plan into action. You have the ability to create anything. The more you talk about your plan and the more people you tell, the more real it becomes. Imagine that you want to become a millionaire. I had a goal to be a millionaire by the age of 25 and I achieved it. How did I do it? I started to create that thought process of what it would be like. I started to talk about it and constantly tell people I was going to be a millionaire. In fact, I told people so often they actually began to believe me. I asked myself, “What are the characteristics of a millionaire?” I had to think about my belief structures that would support my desire. I asked myself important questions that would affect my achievement. Would I have to conquer my fear of public speaking? Would I have to learn how to be very good on the phone? What would I have to become as a person to become a millionaire and be that successful? I had to get my thought process in motion on all of these questions in order to have a clear vision of what I wanted.


Once you’ve set the plan in motion by creating a goal, you’ve got to move on to step two.  You have to believe that your goal is simply your future spoken out loud today.  Start living your life as if that goal was, in fact, a reality that very minute.  Everything you do must reflect your desire.  For me, step two required me that I start acting as if I was already a millionaire.  I started to imagine and pretend and visualize as if I was the pinnacle of success. I acted like I was the top income earner at my company.  When you act it, all of your actions will reflect that you are really a millionaire.   If you want to be the best, you have to have the characteristics of being the best.  Show up early.  Be on time.  Take better notes.  Read more books.  Go the extra mile.  Why?  Because that’s what someone who is at the top would do.


Once you’ve thought about it, set your goal, and start to live your life as if that were the way things really are. Ultimately you become it. People see you in that way because you have total self-belief that is real. I became a successful millionaire by age 25, meeting my goal, and even surpassing it.

How “It” Changed My life

When I started to practice the three principles of the T.A.B. Plan, everything I did seemed clearer and more achievable. That is the true power of the spoken word. It is every aspect of who you are and what you become. When we started our Company , we set our first goal to be a $100 million dollar-a-year company and to impact 100,000 lives. The first time I stated this goal was in front of 350 people at our convention in Las Vegas. No other network marketing company in the history of the business had ever reached this goal. I had only heard of one other company that had set their sights so high. I had heard (though never actually confirmed) that another company had accomplished this goal, and I believed that if they could do that so could we. It wasn’t until after we achieved this dream that I found out that this other company had never really hit their goal. In fact, they’ve since gone out of business. I had established our goal on a false belief that it was possible. In the end, it was possible because I believed that we could make it happen. That we had the power to make this seemingly impossible goal, real. I got up on stage that day and I spoke those words, and this was the biggest dream I could think of at that moment in my life. My mother’s words, “Dream big dreams, small dreams have no magic” were running wildly through my head. That commitment, those few words, started everything in motion that has became our reality.

Everyone who attended that convention was talking about it when they left, and they told everyone they knew. I knew that we would have to apply the principles of T.A.B. because almost everyone thought we were crazy. That such a huge goal was, well, impossible. I knew if I could get them at least thinking about it, that eventually I could get them believing it. And if I could get them believing it, I knew we would become it. Even my uncle, a member of my own family, thought we were aiming just a little too high. When I walked out of the auditorium that day, he was standing with some people and they were guessing where we actually would be in two years. My uncle was pretty sure we’d be doing $4 million a month, but we had to be at $8 million to make our dream a reality. I pulled my uncle aside and I said to him, If you’re going to be on our team, your answer needs to be congruent with our goal – $100 million a year, $8 million a month. Believe it, speak it, and soon you will develop that belief. From that day forward, everyone in the company was taking about our goal. Even though we only had four employees at the time, we had them put stickers on their computers in the office that read “We’re is doing $8 million a month by this date.” And you know what? We met that goal in our 13th month of business, 11 months early, and we made history by becoming one of  the fastest growing company in the industry.  Not bad!

About the Author: Jason Boreyko was the CEO & Co-Founder of a startup company in Scottsdale, AZ which grew into a $220 Million Dollar a year business with over one million distributors, created 40 Millionaires and generated over $350,000,000 in commissions for its members.