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Make Mistakes So You Can Become Successful

We make mistakes. The problem is many of us don’t learn from them.

We go on to repeat them over and over again. And continue the question why we are stick in this vicious circle.

Because we don’t want to grow. We like being complacent. Even in our misery. We like to be comfortable.

We hate failing so we play it safe. Forget safe. The road to success is riddled with failure. I personally like to fail because I know success is around the corner.

So fail and fail often.

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How Optimism Is One Of The Keys To Success

gary vaynerchuk and optimism

(Gary Vaynerchuck on the DailyVee)

Life is tough, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. I have lived through some dark times and moments where I didn’t know I would survive. And I am not talking about on a deployment in Iraq or Afghanistan. I am talking about everyday life before and after the military. Up until a few years ago, I was a very pessimistic person. I felt like everyone was conspiring against me. You know what I am talking about. The victim mentality. Where instead of thinking of ways to see the silver lining to problems, I was retreating to the dark and “woe is me” comfort of thinking and dealing with things.

And it was comfortable and I was content. Sure, on the surface I complained about things, but deep down I felt safe in my misery. Safe in the way that I had to put no effort into complaining and being not trying to achieve anything. But I was wrong. I put in some hard work, but I was mostly mentally.  Believe it or not, it’s hard work being miserable. It’s also hard work being positive and being spent everyday achieving your dreams. I don’t know about you, but I would rather have the latter. Wouldn’t you?

I mean, think about it, both of them take a considerable amount of effort to do: complaining and doing. But by doing you are actually getting what you want. Do you want that new job? Don’t go into it think that someone has more experience than you and is going to get it. Do you want to finish that degree? Don’t go into thinking of the amount of classes that you have to take. Think about walking across that stage and using it later in life. But you can’t do any of that if you aren’t starting with the right attitude.

When I realized that I needed to first start with the right attitude, my outlook on life completely changed for the better. I took my own dreams into account and set about conquering them. By being optimistic myself, it automatically impacted my world around me. My family, friends, coworkers, and soldiers who worked for me were directly affected by my new disposition.
I used optimism to finish out two decades of service. I used optimism when I didn’t know when I didn’t know where I was going work next. I think my optimism helped to keep my options open and my mind clear of what I wanted out of life. It paid off in the end and I am way ahead of where I thought I would ever be.

Now in my new profession, I live by pushing optimism out in the forefront. I wake up with gratitude for a new day and for the rest of the 86,400 seconds I work hard to keeping it positive. Like, Gary Vaynerchuk says above, “If you lack optimism, it’s game over.”

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You Are Worthy

you are worthy simply because you exist.
The world is not fair.  Some people get all the breaks in life.  I will never amount to anything.  Why am I even here?  Sound familiar?  Any of it?
Each of you reading this today can identify with these sentences.  At some point in your life, you will say one of them or something similar.  You will feel like no matter what you say or do, you can’t get any further in life.

Ok.  Well, I don’t agree with you. I know that the entire world is not fair, but mine is.  My world is everything around me that I can affect.  I don’t care about the chaos going on around me. You know why?  Because I know my worth and you should, too.

You are worthy simply because you exist.

Yes, it’s just that simple.  There is honestly no difference between you and the next person.  Especially a celebrity.  Well, at least, one thing: they realized their worth earlier than you.  That’s it. They knew that they had someone to offer the world and they knew they could do it.

That’s what being worthy is about.  Recognizing that you were born this way and that you can do and be anything you put your mind to. I know there are some skeptics out there.  People who say that this is all lies and everyone is not born with the same advantages.

But I am telling you the truth.  There will be tough times and obstacles. There will be times that you feel like quitting and giving up.  But you can’t do that.  Too many people do in life already.  Be different.

Be different and believe in yourself. Be different and know you are something special created by the cosmos to be exceptional.  Be different and ACTUALLY believe these words and act upon them.  Don’t pay lip service to your worthiness.  Use it as fuel and realize your potential is beyond imagination.

No one is better than you.  No one wants it more than you.  So now prove it to yourself.  Prove that these words aren’t falling on death ears.  It’s not going to be easy, but nothing worth having  ever was.  

-alv

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Pay Attention To What’s In Front Of You

I will be the first to admit that I am completely wired to the internet.  Building a brand here at Living The Dream has had me constantly on the world wide web working on it.  But that has like anything come at a cost.  What cost you ask?

Time.  Now that I am here in Saudi Arabia (you didn’t know?) working and living I am thousands of miles from my family.  And the eight hour time difference doesn’t help either!

See, time is a commodity in my world.  The time I take to interact with people is engagement that pays off in the long run.  But what about the people physically there with me in the same space?

That time is more important than anything else.  Honestly.  Be mindful of being present in the moment and fully engaged with who has chosen to spend their time with you.  Even if it’s not in the presence of another, make sure you do it whether on Skype, Google Hangout, etc.

Listen to them speak and watch the emotions in their face. Actively listen and pay attention to their words.  Show them that you value their time and what they are saying.

I am going to make an effort to be more engaged this month, this year, and this lifetime. Will you?

-alv

 

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What Do You Deserve In Life?

What exactly in life do you think you deserve?  A big house?  A nice job?  A beautiful spouse on your arm?  What if I told you that you honestly don’t deserve any of it.  Not one bit.  Not if you don’t work for it.

Many of us, not all, have someone been raised with a sense of entitlement.  As if because we were born, the world owes you any and everything that you want and desire.  That because of the work that our parents or ancestors have done we someone is entitled to a pass over hard hips, turmoil, trials and tribulation.

I want to tell you that if you feel that way and you are reading this blog you are in the wrong place.  My blog is not for you.  Though I love having followers and talking with you all, I can’t deal with those who feel that particular.  I don’t do entitlement.

Well, let me take that back.  I don’t care for people who have a sense of entitlement and have done nothing to warrant it.  I do, however, feel that we are all entitled to achieve our dreams.  We are entitled to be always striving for greatness.

But do you deserve it?  I say yes and can say it with conviction.  I know you deserve to not struggle your whole life with money, weight, or self-esteem.  I know you deserve to come out on top as much as possible.

But you and only you can get you there.  Only you can get what you deserve.  You can have all the right mentors, friends, coaches, etc. But if you don’t put in the work, it will never work for you.

We don’t simply deserve something because we are living and breathing on this planet earth.  Every specimen on this planet has to work hard for what they deserve. Why would you be any different?  Really.

Time is of the essence.  We don’t have to debate what you think about the subject.   Stop telling me your hustling.  Stop being everywhere but on the journey to fulfilling your dreams. It’s time to do work.

Have at it.

 

-alv

 

 

 

 

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How Getting Through Today Is One of The Keys To Success

 

Go through today; quit tomorrow living the dream

I don’t know about you, but there are days that I don’t want to do anything.  Well, anything productive that is.  Where I feel like my schedule is too full and I don’t have enough hours in the day to accomplish it all.

And a lot of times it is easier to just give up and crawl back in the bed.  Pulling the covers over our head and shutting the world out.  But let’s not mistake getting rest with avoiding things that are important.  Avoiding today is not going to solve anything.   The right thing to do is to get through today.

Let’s not worry about tomorrow.  Just today.  24 hours. That’s our focus.  But how can you work on anything when your day starts out not how you wanted it to.  You are already running late or thinking about what type of traffic you have to fight through.  I know from experience that it’s a terrible feeling to start your day this way.

So let’s stop it now and I am going to help you.  If you are at home and reading this, let’s take five minutes to get into the right frame of mind.  I like using what’s called.  Affirmations are things that people say to us or we say to ourselves that provide emotional support and encouragement.  They are positive motivational words that help to quickly get you in the right frame of mind.

Here are some of my favorite ones that I use daily:

“You are enough.”

“I believe in you.”

“Remember why you started.”

“Luck is the preparation meeting the moment of opportunity.”

“Let your faith in yourself be bigger than your fear.”

There are many more, but these are just a few that I say to myself each morning.  Now I want you to say these or other ones you find to yourself now.  Don’t just speak the words.  Put some meaning behind them.  Really feel what you are saying and focus on the words to solicit a real impact on your day.

Next, close your eyes and envision how you want your day to play out.  Get very detailed on what the end of the day looks like.  By doing this you already know the outcome.  You already know the steps you need to take to have it all play out.  Visualizing your day this way can have lasting effects on not just your mood but how productive you are on anything you do for the entire day.

Look,  I am not saying that it’s not going to still be a challenging day.  You still may have some hiccups and setbacks, but you can manage them better.  You are in the right frame of mind and ready to deal with whatever comes your way.

Don’t think ahead to the things you have to accomplish tomorrow.  Only focus on today.  Taking each day one at a time is one of the keys to success.  Discipline and focus are two others.

 I know you we have talked about discipline in the past.  You know what needs to be done and how to go about it.  We talked about stepping back and refocusing when the situation warranted it and how it can help you stay mindful of what you need to accomplish.

So the only thing to do now is seize the day.  Get dressed.  Get ready. Stay focused and disciplined in everything you do.  Refocus when you need to.  Don’t think farther than these 24 hours.  Only concentrate on these 86,400 seconds that you have to become that much better today.

Like Soledad O’Brien recently said at a conference, “Go through today.  You can always quit tomorrow.”

What steps are you going to take to get through today?  Let me know in the comments.

 

 

 

 

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Stop Setting Yourself On Fire For Others

We are all guilty of it.  We meet someone and we subconsciously become obsessed with them. I am not just talking about someone you are romantically interested in. That goes for platonic relationships, too. As humans, we have an insane yearning to be liked and accepted by others.

Think about it. You gave your all to a person who left you at the moment you needed them the most. In your most vulnerable state they ran. You set yourself on fire to keep their love near you. Instead of staying they ran when the flames got too hot.

They ran from your love.  From your commitment to them.  From everything, you gave to them.  And while it was going on you had no idea because you were blinded by the flames.

By that time, you were burning out of control and couldn’t understand what was happening around you. You couldn’t see that they moved on. And by that time you couldn’t react to the situation.

Not you? How about your “friends”? Take a look. Which ones are there for you at your worst?  Which one always makes every conversation about them when it shouldn’t be?

Who calls you only when they need something? Who asks all of you, but won’t answer the phone when you need them the most.  When they ask for you to help, you are all in and blindly at that.

Still not you?  Ok, let’s look at the workplace. Yes, even here you are burning out of control. Now I hear you already, “But I have to do what my Boss says”. That’s not what I am talking about. I am talking about watching out for yourself and  not being taken advantage of.

I’m talking about you not staying late for hours while the slackers go home. Telling you they would stay and help but they had plans already. Be productive, but don’t get burned alive. Be a team member, but don’t get abused and misused.

Listen, my intention for this post was not to bring up old wounds. I didn’t write this to hurt any feelings or get you down.  I wrote this to wake you up and see that you are on fire for all the wrong damn reasons. You are burning yourself out pleasing people who don’t care about you or don’t value your time.  Who are selfish and just not good damn people.

I want you to extinguish those flames, but keep the spark alive. Keep the spark burning to stoke your ambition. Keep it burning for those who deserve and need your help.  And if you see someone else on fire, help them out. They  have no idea what’s happening and you probably just made a new friend.

-alv

 

 

 

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5 Tips To Get Yourself Aligned With The Right People

aligned with the right people
Have you every had a car that pulled to the left or right every time you drove it?  No matter what you did it wouldn’t stay straight.  As tight as you held the steering wheel, it felt like the car had a mind of its own.So you take it to a car shop and they fix the problem.  They get the car back in alignment.  You took it to the right people and had them correct the problem.  You may not have even known them, but you sought them out for their skills.

This is what we need to do in our personal lives.  We are all over the place sometimes.  Trying to do so much with no direction.  That is why we are all over the road of life.  We need to get our life aligned with the right people.  Here are five tips to help you get on the right track.

  1. Figure out what you want.  What do you want to accomplish the most in the near future?  What ignites the spark inside of you?  What has you up at night and keeps butterflies in your stomach?  Got it?

2. Find the people to get you there.  It may be a certain teacher that everyone calls unapproachable.  Someone who seems smarter than the entire school.  It may be the Vice President of you company who everyone says doesn’t talk to anyone lower than a manager.  It may be a famous person that is where you want to be already.  It really doesn’t matter who it is.  Just someone ahead of you already that can help you in your journey.  Found someone? Now the hard part.  Well, for some at least.

3. Approach them right now.  That’s right.  Don’t think, just do it.  Go to that teacher’s office and knock on the door.  Talk to the V.P’s secretary and get on his calendar for that day.  Better yet, shoot him an email (not a cheesy one) and ask for five minutes of his or her time.  Send an email to that famous person and reach out sincerely.  Tell them you need a couple of minutes on the phone or Skype to ask them some questions.  They can only say no.  But many will say yes.

4.  Act on their advice.  They will say yes, but many don’t appreciate them sincerely.  Many are coming to them only asking for something material.  Not for advice and knowledge and wisdom.  You are validating them and they will help you.  Trust me.  I do it all the time.  I reach out to people and a lot of them say no.  But I only need a one or two to say yes.  And when they do, they open up completely to me.  And what they tell me I act on.  Because telling them, doesn’t do anything for people.  Walking the walk and applying the knowledge shows them that you were serious.  Acting on what they told you gets you ahead.

5. Show gratitude and give back.  Show them that what they told you has helped you get into the right frame of mind.  And if it didn’t help, tell them why but what you did instead.  This helps create a relationship that neither one of you knew was forming.  Tell them you appreciate all that they did for you and tell others.  Hell, show others and spread the knowledge to those who are out of alignment and don’t even know it.

Now you are in your right place and fully aligned.  You are headed straight down the road.  You have also gained some possible relationships along the way.  But don’t stop there.  This is a “rinse and repeat” type of thing.  You are going to have to keep doing this to stay on the right track.  You have to seek out other people and build new relationships while solidifying the other ones.

And some people will reach out for you to help in their alignment. Help them out so that we all can travel down the road of success.

Who are you going to contact this weekend or next week to get you better aligned?  Comment below and tell me about it. 

-alv

P.S. If you liked this, please share it on your favorite social media site.  Thanks in advance!

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4 Tips That Will Help You Become Your True Self

(courtesy of RedFrost Motivation)

 Do you know who you are?

There is someone out there right now who is feeling less than themselves.  There are a number of people out there who are just existing and getting by.  Caught in the rat race of life. They are getting by, but not happy where they are. More importantly who they are.

So what do they do?  Besides feeling hopeless and full of self-pity. What do they do need to do?

1. Figure out what you want.  Do you want to go to school? Be an entrepreneur? Be a school teacher?  The first step is figuring out what exactly do you want to be in  life.  I don’t know what makes you passionate.  What keeps you up at night and always in your thoughts during the day?

2.  Write and plan it out. Seeing things in black and white does something to the mind.  It gives an unofficial contract and gets many people fired up and ready. But you have to plan it out and figure out the steps needed to achieve your dreams.

3. Visualize it.  Sit down and close your eyes.  Take a few minutes and visualize yourself living this life already.  Who is there  with you? Who can you see that contributed to your success and is right there with you? I want you to  take the time and really see it as clearly as possible.

4. Take physical action and do it.  That’s right.  You know what you want.  You planned it out and you visualized it.  You know the details.  Now time to act on it!  You now know what it takes to be an entrepreneur, so get to work.

You wrote your plan out to get that college degree.  So it’s time to apply and get it into school.  No fear. I know you are nervous.  That’s understandable.  But we are not going to let fear take over our desire for a better life.

This is our lifeline to living an actual life not an existence.  No living organism on this planet is just existing.  Everything is living life to the fullest. With a plan and a vision of something greater that what they currently are.

  So are you ready?

If you liked this please comment, like, and share with others. Don’t be shy.  Share it on social media or email it to a friend who needs it.  

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Nothing Is Over Until You Stop Trying

IMG_1947

What is stopping you in the pursuit of your dreams?

That’s you.  Standing in front of the ice.  The lake.  The mountains.  Subconsciously we quickly think of the journey as being impossible.  That know matter how much energy we exert, we won’t make it.  That this is the end of the journey for us.

And at first glance, anyone would think the same.  I mean look at it. The very sight of it makes you want to question your sanity.  To be honest, most would just quit there.  Just stop.

But we aren’t the stopping kind of people are we?  We aren’t going to let obstacles get in our way are we?  These are  just tests, trials and tribulations to see if we are strong enough.

To see if we have the grit inside of us to carry on.  And you and I both know that you do. We have overcome more in our lifetime than many others.  Many who have succumbed to the weight of it on their shoulders.  We don’t stop. We don’t quit.

We just lean into it and keep going.  One foot in front of the other.  slowly going across the ice on this cold river of uncertainty.  Climbing the mountain not able to see over the top for hours, days, maybe months and sometimes years.  We climb towards the inevitable.  Only one thing is certain on this trip:  Failure and quitting is behind us as we move further and further away.

And why would you want to quit right in the middle?  Listen, quitting doesn’t make you a bad person. But it doesn’t make you a better one either.  If you are stop trying something because it’s too dangerous, I get it.  But if you are stopping just because it makes you uncomfortable……that’s the point!  The point is to shed the comfort zone and move to somewhere else unrecognizable.

Time to make the unfamiliar very familiar.

This is your wake up call.  Time to climb some mountains.

If you liked this post, please share it with your friends.  I would great appreciate it!