Another year, another dolla, another freebie to help you grow your mind in 2018.
As an INTJ, I find that…
“You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant”
-Harlan Ellison
Yep, 2017 is already over…You’re now sitting there…thinking how far you’ve progressed in your personal objectives…Jesus, it sounds dreadful 😛
But seriously, don’t be too hard on yourself (I often tell myself this)
You’ve come a long long way, fighting your own battles bla bla bla.
I’m going to reveal yet again a few GEMS that allowed me to become more “successful”, “happy” and a more evolved human being as a whole.
About a year ago, I felt like I was on top of the world and everything was coming my way.
Then, I got really sick. For over 6 months, I could barely move out of bed.
I lost weight, muscle mass, became anemic, fell behind my self growth and couldn’t work on my business.
But I had a lot of time to think about my life…and I asked myself the hard questions like:
– What do I want from life/what’s my purpose?
– Who are my real friends?
– What kind of people I want to surround myself by and how to deal with toxic people?
– Why did my 9-5 job bring out the worst in me?
– What am I holding off because of fear?
The moral of the story is that I overcame everything against all odds.
Almost nobody thought it was possible. I know this because I could sense it and I saw the look on people’s faces when I told them my story.
Now I know that defining success should be on your OWN terms, and you should achieve it by your OWN rules, and this is the only way you will build a life you’ll be proud to live. (inspired by female entrepreneur Anne Sweeny)
TLDR; skip to the bottom and you’re here.
OK let’s begin.
People will often try to frame you a certain way or try to tell you who you are. By doing this, you’re no longer defined by your past, only the future you are creating. When you surround yourself with people who remind you of your past, you’ll have a hard time progressing. This is one of the reasons why we get stuck in certain roles, which we can’t break free from (e.g. the fat kid, shy girl, etc).
I realized there’s 2 ways of being stoic. Physically & emotionally. You can be stoic physically…and put up a front about how nothing fades you. But deep down inside you are hurting. Being stoic emotionally is where you want to get at. Because no matter how much you try to “fake” your feelings, it’ll always come back creeping on you. I practice 3 things to remedy this:
1) Acknowledgement
If you feel criticized or judged. Acknowledge how you feel. Stop trying to suppress it. When you feel weird inside, ask yourself “Is this a valid feeling?”
2) Mindfulness
Keep checking in with yourself. Whenever needed. Maybe once or twice per day or maybe a couple times a week. Practice asking yourself “How am i Feeling right now?”.
3) Self-Compassion.
Might sound stupid but this shit helps to get you on that stoic level. Be compassionate with yourself, you know, the same way you would be if someone told you about their problems.
Understand there are things others experience that you do not and could never or never will; and things you experience that other people do not and could never or never will. Being closed minded means that you don’t accept new, legitimate information or ideas that challenge your views.
However, when you start accepting claims as true without evidence or reasoning, you’ve become so open minded your brain has fallen out. Having a healthy open mind does not mean you have to believe in everything that anyone tells you, only that you are ready to accept ideas which they can support with rationality and empiricism.
In fact, you’ll find all too often that the people pushing you to “open-mindedly” believe in something without evidence are often foisting upon you a system of ideas that is circular and incredibly close-minded. There is no “truth”. It just boils down to your personal world view. So stick to it and be assertive.
Don’t get caught in the status complex. As someone who worked in corporate for many years, I can confidently say that this is an epidemic. Do you live by billable hours, and see hard work & long hours as a badge of honour? Do you think status and titles bring your true happiness and fulfillment?
The cold hard truth is that it doesn’t matter what your “title” or “status” is. What matters is how much value you are offering and what is your end goal. I believe that working more efficiently, and not harder just for the sake of harder, and working towards more meaningful goals, has allowed me to be successful.
This is a philosophy I help clients build into their lives and businesses. So it doesn’t matter if you’re a director, doctor, engineer, lawyer, CA, CMO or CEO. So often I’ve seen colleagues get a 10k raise, only to find out that, after taxes, it added 500$ more per month to their income, which made no significant impact in their happiness. A $500/mo increase in exchange for 3x more the responsibility, meaning less time and flexibility.
Focus on your desired lifestyle first and that’s the only way you’ll find real fulfillment and happiness.
I can say with 100% confidence that emotional intelligence is what brought me here today. And the 4 key elements are this:
 Self-awareness – recognizing your own emotions & how they affect your thoughts and behavior (taking a step back and thinking critically), know your strengths and weaknesses which results to higher self-confidence.
 Self-management – being able to control your impulsive feelings and behaviors, manage your emotions in healthy ways (not acting up on every little thing), take initiative, follow through on commitments, and adapt to changing circumstances (instead of staying stuck in your ways).
 Social awareness – understanding the emotions, needs, and concerns of other people, pick up on emotional cues, feel comfortable socially, and recognize the power dynamics in a group or organisation. In other words, being mindful of other people’s thoughts & feelings (thinking before you talk).
 Relationship management – knowing how to develop and maintain good relationships (not only in business), able to have non-bias discussions, communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, work well in a team, and managing conflict. After researching this, speaking to professionals in the field, talking to some personal mentors, it’s very common for people with high emotional intelligence to get “hurt”. Because other people will not reciprocate the same mindfulness. It can become tiresome, exhausting and could result in a constant compromise for you. Which is why it’s important to check-in with yourself & have a lot of self-compassion for yourself. In my opinion (and experience), it’s not the smartest people that are the most successful or the most fulfilled in life. You probably already know people who are academically brilliant & yet are socially awkward & unsuccessful at work or in their personal relationships. So…if you had a couple trump cards for life, I would make them revolve around emotional intelligence.
I think that I went very far in 2017 but I could have done better. I could have pushed myself more. I could have forced myself outside my comfort zone a little more. But the times I actually did push myself a little more, I pushed further than the extra mile. This is what differentiated me from other people. Taking a leap of faith, pushing yourself a little more than everyone else, going a little over than the extra mile. This is where you’ll get recognized and opportunities will show. These were times I stood out in pack and got real results.
AS PROMISED, here is the list of books that have impacted me in 2017. You can find the audiobooks on audible and the physical copies on amazon!
1. Small Giants,
2. The Dictator’s Handbook,
3. The Power of Broke,
4. Waking Up,
5. The Fabric of the Cosmos,
6. Sapiens: A Brief Summary of Humankind
7.  Rich Dad Poor Dad,
8. Cashvertising
1. Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
Saving money is not going to make you richer. Cashflow will make you richer. The book is the story of a person (the narrator and author) who has two fathers: the first was his biological father – the poor dad – and the other was the father of his childhood best friend. Both fathers taught the author how to achieve success but with very different approaches. The main difference was that Kiyosaki’s rich dad taught him how to deal with money. You’ll learn here that the rich don’t work for mone, the importance of financial literacy, taxes and corporations. Always take stuff like this with a grain of salt as it is always nicer on paper.
2. The Power of Broke by Daymond John
There’s a lot of yippidy yap in this book but the point is that being broke allows you to find resources others can’t see. When you don’t have anything, it forces you to use whatever you’ve got, leading you to use resources in new, creative ways other people don’t see. There’s no better time than now to start a business as a broke person, it’s just getting cheaper and cheaper. Easier said than done but always use your disadvantage as an advantage.
3. Waking Up by Sam Harris
This is great for spiritual but not so religious people. The goal of meditation is to remove the concept of self. Yea..I know this is next level. But still worth trying. One of the main concepts is being able to observe thoughts enter into consciousness as opposed to feel yourself think them lol. The idea is to be able to experience consciousness as it is, and not as yourself experiencing it (i.e., without a self). The output of this technique is to be able to separate oneself from the stress and pressure of everyday life and emotional / physical pain This can be done by realizing that you are not experiencing it simply because you do not exist. It then just becomes another experience in the world for you to examine. Another main concept of meditation is realizing that happiness isn’t tied to things, and in fact those ties can hurt happiness. True happiness is happiness with nothing but your consciousness. Not even your thoughts. Just being.
4. Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
This book provides a scientific perspective on the history of how humans came to dominate the planet. But many grounds were covered here. Very interesting and informative book about mankind. The moral of the story was that although our health, wealth and knowledge has vastly improved, are we actually happier apes? Subjective well-being questionnaires, issued and reviewed by psychologists, have shown that, while humans experience short-term rises in happiness or sadness, in the long-term and on an individual level, our happiness hovers around the same level. What REALLY resonated with me in this book was the Buddhist philosophy of happiness, which centers around the idea that you are not the events that happen to you, but you are also not the feelings you have. You are not your feelings. They are just feelings. Thus, if you understand this, you can release the needs to keep chasing the need to feel happy or to not feel angry or to not feel sad. In other words, you have to understand yourself.
5. Small Giants
This is great if you have a business or want to start a business. It teachers you the meaning and reasons of “lifestyle businesses”. A business is not always about growth if you want to live a desired lifestyle. Sometimes staying small will allow you to be a giant!
6. The Fabric of the Cosmos
We’re just fabric of the universe so don’t stress. This book was recommended by my mentor. A lot about quantum physics. Which is basically the science of “subatomic particles” So quarks, different dimensions, metaphysics and the infamous string theory. I enjoyed reading about quantum entanglement, which was defined as “spooky” physics by Einstein. A lot of talk about it being the foundation our future of teleportation tool.
7. The Dictator’s Handbook
I’m not very political. But this book was really good in terms of explaining politics logically. A great insight for business owners as well. The authors propose that the power structure any entity (corporation or government) is defined by three core population groups. The authors go on to explore the implications on industry, taxation, war, foreign aid, and other important topics. I don’t think the authors’ thesis applies to every situation and I am confident there are plenty of ethical managers out there (not so sure about the politicians…). However, their framework does explain plenty of the bad behavior we see in politics and corporate life and it’s a framework I’ll definitely keep in mind when assessing organizations and incentive structures.
8. Cashvertising
My good buddy lent me this book. Want to be a great marketer? Then learn good copy. The secret to great ad copy is descriptive adjective-filled copy texts that beautifully describes what is being sold and plays on all of the senses to tempt viewers. This is the holy grail of copy-writing for your advertising.
LASTLY, if you want more nuggets like this before ANYONE else INCLUDING freebies. You can go ahead and signup to my newsletter on the top right! That’s my way of giving back!
Cheers y’all!

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