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Archive for January, 2012

Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 14: S-T-R-E-T-C-H Yourself

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 31, 2012

I love this part because its about doing the things that will grow you and your ability to get your goals and dreams. There is a saying “To get what you never had, you must do something you have never done.” Because that would make sense, if you had what it is you wanted then you would be doing the right things, right? So if what your daily habits are producing now in your fitness, your relationships, your bank account, your business are not what you want then its time to stretch your self and grow and do different things so you can accomplish those goals.

Also don’t forget to keep up with your workbook and there is a new sheet at the bottom and one coming tomorrow as well for our final installment. Keep up the great work!

Her’s Darren!

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13

If you are going to achieve goals you have never achieved before, you must be willing to do what you have never done before.

One of those things is to allow, no actually push, yourself to FAIL. And if you want to succeed big, you have to fail big. There is no way around it.

When I was only 20 years old, I got into residential real estate sales. It was the early ’90s, and the real estate market was as tough as it is right now. I knew nothing about the real estate business; I had no prior experience, clientele or even credibility—I wasn’t even old enough to drink! But in just 90 days, I was outselling (new listings and pending escrows) an entire office of 44 veteran agents—combined!

The strategy I am going to reveal to you made that possible and is one of my personal-achievement secret weapons. I now offer it to you…

When I went to my first real estate seminar, I asked the lecturer to lunch. I asked him for his best tip on being successful in real estate. His answer was, “Go fail—a lot.”

“What?!” I said. “I thought the whole idea of success was to avoid failure.” “Quite the opposite,” he said. Then he told me a quote from Tom Watson of IBM: “The key to success is massive failure.” He said, “Your goal is to out-fail your competition. Whoever can fail the most, the fastest and the biggest wins.”

I was still perplexed.

Then he drew this analogy out on a cocktail napkin. He said, “Life, growth and achievement work like a pendulum.

On one side, you have failure, rejection, defeat, pain and sadness.

On the other side, you have success, acceptance, victory, joy and happiness.

If you stand still in life, you won’t experience either side of life, neither the failure and pain nor the success and happiness.

Over time, most people figure out how to operate in a narrow comfort zone. They can only accept a certain amount of pain, rejection and failure. But then they also only experience the same degree of joy, connection and success.”

The key is that you cannot experience one side without an equal proportion of the other. This is the mistake most people make: They think they can have success without failure, love without heartache, and happiness without sadness. As sure as we have gravity, we have the duality and pendulum of success and failure.

The only way to achieve more success is to experience more failure. Once you know this you are no longer afraid of failure, you accept it as necessary, part of the process.

Now, if you want to drive your success, here is what you do…

You cannot necessarily control the amount of success you get. Like Jim Rohn said, “What you pursue can elude you—it can be like chasing butterflies.” What you can control, though, is the amount of failure you get.

Your job is to push the pendulum as hard and as fast as you possibly can on the side of failure. Remember, “The key to success is massive failure.” Go get massive failure.

When I learned this, I went nuts. I became a failure-seeking maniac. I strategized on how I could get as much failure, as big and as fast as possible.

In real estate sales, there are a few ways:

One is calling on expired listings. These are people who had their house on the market with another agent and it didn’t sell. The minute it shows as “expired” on the computer, 100-plus agents call immediately. Sellers quickly learn to hate Realtors.

Another is “for sale by owners” (FSBOs). They hate Realtors so much, they wouldn’t even list with one. There’s lots of great failure to be had there.

Then there is just walking up and down the street knocking on doors—lots of slammed doors, angry jeers, barking and biting dogs, and kids throwing rocks at you from across the street. Tons-o-fun!

Lastly, there is cold-calling. The best time to do this is when you know people are home, which is usually around dinnertime. People love that!

I set ambitious goals each day for the number of nos and rejection I wanted. Each day, I’d push for more and more and more. And boy, did I fail—big time!

But guess what?

Some of those expired listings listed with me.

Some of those FSBOs ended up converting and listing with me.

And some of those cold doors and cold-calls were looking to sell and list with me.

That is how I ended up outselling an office of 44 agents, combined. I was willing to be a massive failure, and I ended up LOVING failure. In fact, it became quite addictive because I knew it was the controlling factor in my greater success.

To this day, if I get to the end of the week or month and I have not failed significantly at something, I know I also didn’t get the pendulum higher on the side of success, and I am mad at myself.

So, as you go for your big goals the rest of this year and decade, don’t just embrace failure, go for it—and go for it massively.

Measure your success by your failure. Create contests with yourself and others to see who can get more nos, who can get rejected more and be the bigger failure. And then celebrate your failures. It will be those needed failures that will cause the pendulum to swing on the side of success, thus letting you achieve your big, hairy, audacious goals.

If you have audacious goals, you have to be willing to be audacious.

Suggestion: Strategize on where and how you can increase your rate of failure. Set your monthly, weekly and daily failure goals. Don’t worry about the success; the pendulum will swing on that side without you having to think about it. How big of a failure can you become? Go big!

Thoughts, questions, supporting ideas to share with the group? Leave your comments in the section below.

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Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 13: Success Cycles

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 30, 2012

Cycles are a part of life, everything in life goes in cycles, you will never always go up (especially the housing and stock markets and the economy) but if you learn how to adjust you can keep going forward, it dont mean every cycle you have to crash and burn, but if you do a few times to learn the lessons you need do it! Find a failure in every victory and a victory in every failure and you will be on your way to success in every area of your life.

Here’s Darren!

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

We are human. We cannot be 100 percent 100 percent of the time. We cannot improve every area of our life simultaneously. We cannot do everything at the same time. When we try is when we fail, burn out or blow up.

Nature works in cycles. As with the seasons, there is a time to learn, a time to produce, a time to harvest and a time to rest. Farmers, schoolchildren, and even professional athletes operate in seasons. That approach to life can help you excel, too.

I want to explain an advanced achievement strategy that will help you make greater progress toward your goals—faster.

It’s a concept called: Working in Success Cycles.

Let me give you an example. Let’s say you and I are going to race from Los Angeles to New York City. We both have planes. You have a 747, which travels at a cruising speed of 875 mph. I have a mere Learjet, which travels at 400 mph. Now, if I fly straight through, but you have to land and take off in the 10 states in between—taxiing, parking and going through your preflight checklist before taking off again—who is going to win? Me. Even though you travel twice as fast in the air, I will still win because instead of wasting time repeatedly stopping and taking off, I just stay in flight. Even if I am traveling slower, I will still win—by a large margin.

This is how most people spend their days—constantly starting on projects, stopping to do something else, and then having to once again go through the process of getting their head back into the project and recapturing their rhythm. If you spend your day “multitasking,” you may not be getting a whole lot done. Days turn into weeks, months, years, and finally into a decade of constantly taking off and landing and not getting very far.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Many years ago, I learned a strategy called Success Compression. The concept is that you can get more quality output by being supremely focused on an activity, by staying “in the zone” for a sustained period of time.

When I learned this principle, I started structuring my goals around 90-day cycles. Depending on what I wanted to accomplish, I would break the tasks into compressed chunks within those 90 days—three 30-day cycles or six two-week cycles.

When I was building a national distributorship, for example, I focused solely on recruiting for 30 days. Focusing on this task, and this task alone, I could get into a solid rhythm, getting hotter and hotter each day. I found I could recruit more in 30 days than I could in almost a year when mixing that activity with everything else. The next 30 days would be dedicated to training, and then in the following 30 days, I’d be focused on recognition, sorting leaders and driving group campaigns. After a two-week break, I’d start another 90-day cycle.

By compressing key tasks into extended windows of time, I could not only stay in flight at the 400 mph rate, but I found that I started flying faster with the same energy applied and that my success was compressed (time)—and even multiplied (results)!

There is another great value to working in Success Cycles. We can only push so hard for so long without breaking down and burning out. The mind and body desire oscillation. Without it, we will turn to artificial means if needed: caffeine, amphetamines, alcohol, drugs or sleeping pills, etc. You cannot keep an intense focus for too long without time for recovery. When we relentlessly spend energy without allowing for sufficient recovery, we become mental and emotional flat-liners. We slowly, but inexorably, wear down.

Flavius Philostratus (170-245) wrote training manuals for Greek athletes and perfected what he called “work-rest ratios.” Russian sports scientists resurrected his principles in the ’60s and applied it with stunning success to their Olympic athletes. The theory explains that a period of activity must be followed by a period of rest to allow the body to replenish fundamental biochemical sources of energy. This is called compensation.

There are two common problems that affect performance: under-training and overtraining. Under-training is obvious, but overtraining causes equally damaging performance consequences that include persistent injury, sickness, anxiety, negativity, anger, difficulty concentrating, loss of passion and mental staleness. Overtraining causes toxins to build up inside us that lead to burnout and breakdown.

To build muscle, you must use focused intensity to stress and test the muscle. But only in recovery does it grow back bigger and stronger than it was originally. If you keep challenging the muscle without giving it time to recover, you will only continue to break it down.

Ever see a marathon runner? Even though they are working their muscles, they typically have little muscle mass. They are constantly destroying their muscles without giving them a chance to recover and rebuild.

That is what happens to your creative potential if you do not build recovery time into your annual, quarterly, monthly, weekly, and even daily cycles. Without recovery time, you hurt your performance and stunt your growth.

Here is what I like to do. I break my year down into quarters. I then pick a main theme for each quarter—one major area of focus. Then I break down the three months into supporting acts to the play of the quarter. Then I pick a few key behaviors to focus on during each month in that quarter. (I put those key behaviors on my Weekly Rhythm Register to measure progress.)

Let me give you an example. During one of the quarters last year, I decided I was going to figure out and get serious about this social media thing. I didn’t even have a Twitter account (didn’t really know what it was or what it was used for), hadn’t been on Facebook more than twice ever and had about 20 connections on LinkedIn. I decided it was going to be the quarter of social media.

Then I picked a platform for each month: Month 1: LinkedIn, Month 2: Twitter, Month 3: Facebook. I chunked it down even further so that for the first three days of each month, I did nothing but learn everything I possibly could about that one platform—how it worked and how to work it.

Then I devoted an inordinate amount of time to that particular social media platform compared to the rest of my responsibilities that month.

The bottom line is, after that quarter, I had built a following on each platform (LinkedIn: several thousand, Facebook: almost 5,000, Twitter: 58,000) bigger and faster than many people I know who are still “multitasking” with it.

After that quarter of focused effort, I spend very little time maintaining those networks, but they continue to grow on their own because I put so much effort into getting them off the ground. It’s like the rocket example: Ninety percent more energy is expended getting it 3 feet off the ground than is used to orbit all the way around the earth. Most people don’t ever expend enough focused energy to get off the ground.

Here is the recommended formula:
1—Pick a theme for each quarter of the year that represents a major priority to accomplishing your overall 2010 goals.

2—Break the quarter down into cycles: three four-week cycles, two six-week cycles or four three-week cycles—whatever makes the most sense.

3—Define the key behaviors needed for each cycle.

4—Spend the first few days of each cycle “launching” the cycle with intense focused effort.

Thoughts, questions, supporting ideas to share with the group? Leave your comments in the section below.

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Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 12: Your FUEL for Growth

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 25, 2012

This is a very important lesson about growth, we all know that change is the only constant, but Growth is optional! We see this every day, people doing the same thing over and over expecting a different outcome. Said another way, the lesson continues until the lesson is learned. So learn to grow and do what ever you can do fuel that and make it explosive!

Here’ s Darren!

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11

In the previous installment, we reassessed and realigned our “reference group,” or the associations that can help or hurt us in achieving our goals.

Now we need to talk about the most powerful influence in your life: the information or input you feed your mind.

If we want to produce different results in life, we have to think differently, to nurture a different mindset. As Einstein said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”

If your thinking is stinking so will your results. What you think about, you create. This is why all the monumental classic personal-achievement books have focused on how you think: Think and Grow Rich, As a Man Thinketh, The Power of Positive Thinking, The Magic of Thinking Big, etc.

You are not what you think you are, but what you think… you are!

The most constant influence of conditioning that affects our lives, our results and our ability to achieve is the information we feed our mind.

Our minds operate as simply as a computer. Computers are complex systems, but how they work is rather simple. What you input is what it outputs. It doesn’t judge or discriminate; it simply acts on the input. That is also how your mind works. It does not judge or discriminate the information you feed it; it simply acts on the input. I am sure you have heard the axiom “Garbage in, garbage out.” This is true for computer programming, and for the information you allow to program your mind.

This is why it is crucial that you are careful what you feed your mind.

1—Protect
Stand guard at the doorway of your mind. We are constantly surrounded with negative, fearful, worrisome and sensational news, and even entertainment. Every input matters. All input is processed and shapes your view of the world and yourself in it. Be vigilant about what you expose yourself to.

Here are four suggestions to get in control of the information you allow into your head:

1: Cut the Cord. The average estimated hours a person (12 years or older) will spend watching TV this year is 1,704 (4.7 per day). When you consider an average of eight hours of sleep per day, this means the average person spends almost 30 percent of their day watching TV. This is 32.9 hours per week, meaning more than one day every week is spent in front of the TV. If you calculate this over the course of a year, the average person spends 1,710 hours per year in front of a TV—the equivalent of more than two months out of every year. Wow! And people wonder why they can’t get ahead in life!

Personally, I don’t watch any broadcast TV. I don’t read any newspapers, and I don’t listen to news radio. Negative, sensationalistic, appalling news that has no contribution to my personal goals in life makes up about 99.99 percent of what’s out there. I can tell you this practice has not limited my intellectual capacity, my social banter or my financial opportunities. In fact, it has benefited me immensely in all those areas. If you don’t have the stomach for the kind of cold-turkey cord cutting, consider the next suggestion.

More info on the utter madness of the media, watch this video: HERE

2: Selective Listening. I set up RSS feeds to pull information specifically on what I need to stay on my productive purpose. I register for newsletters or blog updates on topics and subjects that are relevant to my objective. Once they become unproductive, I unsubscribe. Does this make you less well-rounded? There is no such thing. We are always scanning the world for what is relevant to us. I just don’t think it is necessary to pick through the trash can looking for a crust of bread when I can have the bread I want delivered to my doorstep. I also don’t want to get the trash on me… or in my head.

3: Low-Information Diet. If you aren’t comfortable getting only the most productive and relevant information you need to be more successful, then at least put yourself on a low-information diet. Limit your intake of news and information. You don’t need a text update on every Wall Street Journal financial crisis. You don’t have to be informed of all the local news crime stats. Find 15 minutes a day to catch up on all the national and world news updates, whether through a favorite news aggregator online, newspaper or single radio program, but don’t overconsume.

4: Mind Your E2E Ratio. When I interviewed Brian Tracy he had a great equation I’d like to share with you. What is the primary difference between the 5 percent of people who are wealthy and those who are not? The 95 percent focus their attention and extra time on entertainment, while the wealthy 5 percent invest their extra time in education. Evaluate yourself: How much time do you spend on entertainment and how much on education? The imbalance of this equation could be the reason your life isn’t where you want it to be.

Unsuccessful people think about what they don’t want most of the time. They talk about problems, listen to news and gossip, and spend their time blaming circumstances, situations and others.

Successful people think about what they want and how they will get it. They are intensely focused on their goals and the information needed to help obtain them.

2—Feed
Now, if you want to think differently, you have to constantly and continually feed your mind the thoughts, ideas and inspiration it needs to help you achieve your ambitious goals. Your mind needs a regular diet of nutrient-rich food—“bread for the head,” as Jim Rohn called it.

My car won’t move without two things: gasoline and an ever-present library of instructional CDs I listen to as I drive around. We average 12,000 miles a year; that’s 300 hours of feeding time. Brian Tracy taught me early in life to turn my car into a mobile classroom. He explained that if you listen to instructional CDs as you drive, each year is the equivalent of two semesters of an advanced degree in college. Think about it: In the time you spend driving, you could obtain a Ph.D. in leadership, sales success, wealth building, relationship excellence—whatever course (CD program) you sign up for. Combine this with a reading routine, and you can separate yourself from the herd of average—CD by CD, book by book!

Certainly, I recommend the CD that comes free inside every issue of SUCCESS magazine. Could I be the ambassador for SUCCESS and not passionately recommend you read it? Of course not! Additionally, we offer SUCCESS Book Summaries, which cull the best ideas from three of the top books in the area of accelerated personal achievement. Each edition is also delivered in audio format so you can listen to it in your car.
Since I have seen, heard or read almost everything and by everybody in the area of personal development, I am often asked who I personally recommend, what my all-time favorite programs are. To answer that question, we organized my four favorite programs into the Mentor Package.

These resources are a few of the many available to you. The key is to choose your input wisely. Maximize your time, education and, ultimately, your success, by feeding your brain the information it needs to help you achieve your goals.

Download and complete the FUEL SYSTEM Worksheets. (NOTE: Sent via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, it will go out again with the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out in the evening following the published post.)

How are you going to limit the negative input you feed your mind? What are you going to do differently now to properly care and feed your mind? Tell us in the comments below.

Posted in Finances, Following, Freedom, Leadership | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Darren Hardy’s Part 11: Building Your SUPPORT Systems

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 23, 2012

Support is very important for anything your trying to do, that’s why its as important for you to associate with the right people as it is when you tell your kids you don’t them hanging around little bobby because hes a bad influence. The power of association is absolute, young or old it has the same effect. Einstein said if you put 2 genius’s in the room with 1 idiot you will end up with 3 idiots not 3 Genius’s.

With that Here’s Darren!!

Review: INTRO,
GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 , 8, 9, 10

So you now have your well-designed goals—fantastic!

You also have your plan of action to achieve them—hooray!

You even have your achievement-management system set to keep you on track with that plan—bravo!

What could possibly get in your way now?

Actually, 6,692,030,277 things (the world’s current population), or at least those people whom you circulate with regularly.

This reminds me of the title for one of Connie Podesta’s books: Life Would Be Easy If It Weren’t for Other People. So true, so true.

Your associations are one of the most powerful influences (I will discuss the most powerful influence on Thursday) that determine whether you will stick to your goals or get forever derailed.

Dr. David McClelland of Harvard University concluded after 25 years of research that the choice of a negative “reference group” was in itself enough to condemn a person to failure and underachievement in life. Whoa! Scary, isn’t it?

His discovery indicates that your reference group is more important in determining your success or failure than any other single factor.

“Associations are both subtle and powerful.” —Jim Rohn

Your associations don’t shove you in a direction; they nudge you ever so slightly over time. Influence is so subtle that it is like being on an inner tube out in the ocean; you feel like you are floating still, until you look up and realize the subtle current has pushed you half a mile down the shore.

Jim Rohn explains: “You will become the combined average of the five people you hang around the most. You will have the combined attitude, health and income of the five people you hang around the most.”

In the worksheets, I am going to have you do something very frightening: I want you to determine the five people you hang around the most and then total up the numbers. You will see clearly that the company you are keeping might be what’s standing between you and what you want to achieve.

Sound harsh? Sometimes the truth is harsh. Yet, I know you already know this. How do I know? Because you vigilantly guard with whom your children associate. (You do, don’t you?) Why? Because you know they will become like those they hang out with.

This isn’t just true for your kids—it’s true for you, too!

“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great ones make you feel that you, too, can become great.” —Mark Twain

If you are really going to go for it, if you’re going to reach, stretch and do things you’ve never done before, if you are going to be able to achieve things you’ve never achieved before, you will need to reappraise and reprioritize the people you surround yourself with. These relationships can nurture you, starve you or keep you stuck.

Jim Rohn taught me that it’s powerful to evaluate and organize your associations into three categories: dissociations, limited associations and expanded associations.

Before I send you off into the worksheets, let me give you a brief description of each category:

1. Disassociations There are some people you might need to break away from completely. Think of your children: What friend(s) do you have that if you were your own parent, you wouldn’t let yourself hang around because of their influence? Cut them loose.

This might not be an easy step to take, but it’s essential. You have to make the hard choice not to let certain negative influences affect you anymore. Decide the quality of life you want, and then surround yourself with the people who represent and support that vision.

“Don’t join an easy crowd. Go where the challenge is great and the emotions are high. Go where the expectations are so strong that they provoke you, push you and urgently insist that you not remain in one place. That way, you will grow and change.” —Jim Rohn

2. Limited Associations There are some people who you can spend three hours with, but not three days. Others you can spend three minutes with, but not three hours. Remember, the influence of associations is both powerful and subtle. You get a deposit of the dominant attitudes, actions and behaviors of the people you spend your time with.

Decide how much you can “afford” to be influenced, based on how those people represent themselves. This is difficult, I know. I have had to do this on several occasions, even with close family members. I will not, however, allow someone else’s actions or attitudes to have an indelible influence on me.

“If you want to fly with the eagles you can’t continue to scratch with the turkeys.” —Zig Ziglar

3. Expanded Associations Whatever area of your life you want to see improvement in, find someone who represents the success you want—the parenting skills you want, the relationship you want, the lifestyle you want—and spend more time with those people. Join organizations, businesses and health clubs where these people are and make friends with them. Create a circle of excellence by purposefully selecting those with whom you will surround yourself.

I would be remiss, though, if I didn’t suggest the resource that Achievers Read. One of the best ways to expand your associations is through SUCCESS magazine. Each month, we present you with today’s most extraordinary achievers, detailing not only what they have achieved, but how they did it, and, most important, how you can, too (you are a subscriber aren’t you?!). These ideas are further detailed and made available on SUCCESS.com, and there is a treasure trove of mentors and their best resources and strategies for success in the SUCCESS Store. Build up your library of expanded associations.

Invest in Mentorship Isn’t it interesting that the top performers in the world have the highest-paid coaches and trainers? Which comes first? I can prove getting the top trainers, coaches and mentors comes before achieving breakthrough performance. Having people who push you to excel is critical, regardless of how successful you are. That’s why those at the top still invest heavily in their trainers and coaches. You can never pay too much for someone’s well-earned experience and guidance. They give you the advantage of the shortcuts they’ve discovered. Their road map identifies the landmines so you can avoid them. Their hard-earned wisdom can help you accelerate your growth.

You’re never too good for a mentor or coach. During my interview with Harvey Mackay, he told me, “I’ve had 20 coaches, if you can believe it. And that’s not a typo. I have a speech coach, I have a writing coach, I have a humor coach, I’ve got a language coach, and on and on.” And he’s a top achiever, respected business leader and best-selling author!

Download and complete the YOUR SUPPORT SYSTEM Worksheets. (NOTE: Sent via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, it will go out again with the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out in the evening following the published post.)

In a future post outside of this series (as well as in a book I am writing), I will explain the process of getting a Peak-Performance Partner, how to develop a personal board of advisors, and how to set up and recruit super-achievers into a Mastermind Group.

Are you courageous enough to make the necessary changes to your associations? Share your plans and convictions in weeding the garden of your sphere of influence.

In the next installment, I will give you the resource that is going to give you the fuel you need to keep you going all year… and all decade.

Posted in Finances, Following, Freedom, Leadership | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 10: Remain F-L-E-X-I-B-L-E

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 20, 2012

Being Flexible is very important in life, if you try to force something to work that just wont at this time you can get off track very easy. Listen to Darren!

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 , 8, 9

Have you ever heard the adage, “I will accomplish this even if it kills me”? Well, in my early years of goal setting and achieving… I almost died! I also missed a lot of other opportunities along the way.

I became so focused, so dogmatic about the goals I had set and my specific plans to achieve them that my blinders kept me from 1) seeing easier and faster routes to my destination, and 2) that some of the goals that were important earlier in the year or at the beginning of the decade were less important than I originally believed.

One of the greatest challenges to success is learning how to stay focused on your goals while remaining flexible enough to adapt to needed change.

Even though we have declared S.M.A.R.T. goals and designed a very specific strategic plan to achieve them, it is equally important to remain open and flexible along the way. If you look back at most of your defining moments, or the pivotal events that transformed your life, I bet most were unplanned and happened unexpectedly. Life is a mystery; you never know what might show up and you can’t be so myopic that you miss opportunities and solutions you couldn’t have even fathomed before.

Murphy’s Law and the T-shirt Philosophy

You know ol’ Murph right? The oh-too familiar friend who always seems to show up at your party at the most embarrassing and worst-possible times. Well Murphy lives to teach us this: If something can go wrong, it will. Don’t be too attached to the route you first charted, as you will undoubtedly be reevaluating and readjusting all along the way.

Imagine being at the top of a double black diamond ski run and your goal is to get to the bottom of the mountain where there is a warm fire and hot cocoa. If you just ski straight down, which seems like the most logical direction, you probably won’t end up with all your limbs intact–certainly not with your skis still strapped on–when you reach those final yards. You’re going to have to zig, zag, bob and weave your way all the way down. You might not look too graceful, you might fall (repeatedly) and you might be fearful all the way down (maybe even screaming like a 4-year-old girl)! But if you are focused on the goal (getting to the bottom, warm fire and hot cocoa), and are constantly ready to adjust to each new visible obstacle, you’ll find your reward waiting for you at the bottom of the slope.

Then there is the T-shirt philosophy—Sh!t Happens… so be ready to deal with it.

An old military axiom says, “No plan ever survives first contact with the enemy.” After the successful invasion of Normandy in WWII, General Dwight D. Eisenhower was asked about the detailed planning process that went into the invasion. He said, “The plans were useless, but the planning was indispensable.”

When we interviewed Scott McNealy of Sun Microsystems, he said, “When you start and build a business, you have to throw out all assumptions every three weeks.”

Just as a business never goes according to the initial business plan, neither does the plan for your life. Don’t get too entrenched in it having to be or go a certain way. Be flexible, have a vision and an outcome in mind, but remain wide-eyed about what might show up to accelerate your ride, and open to the various paths that can get you there.

Goal achieving is a delicate balance between planning and improvisation.

Deal or No Deal?

You never know what’s in the next suitcase…

Even though I have been intensely goal-focused most all of my life, it wasn’t until I learned to remain open to the great “un-expectations” of life, that the big doors of opportunity really opened up for me. In the early 1990s I had started a marketing and advertising firm in downtown San Francisco. We were focused on the hospitality market and I had personally already invested $150,000 in equipment. Then the SuccessTV (TPN, personal-development satellite TV channel) opportunity showed up—totally from left field.

I could have remained fixed on my big plans to conquer the niche I was pursing in the San Francisco hospitality space, but instead I (literally) trashed the equipment I had bought, paid six more months on my lease for the now-empty office space and changed my goals in order to build the TV network. This resulted in earning millions of dollars and eventually selling the business for millions more. By being flexible and open to new opportunities, the outcome was far greater than if I had doggedly worked on my original goal.

When I interviewed leadership and management guru Ken Blanchard, this is what he said: “Life is what happens to you when you are planning to do something else.” Ah, so true.

Remain flexible—Stress and success constraints are caused when people are too fixed and rigid in their beliefs about how things should be. Learn to bob and weave. Realize it’s OK to say, “I changed my mind.”

No homework this installment. Simply reflect on when you might have been too rigid on your goals in the past, even when they were no longer important to your now-greater future. And remember this lesson as you walk into the great unknown of your new year and new decade. It is possible that a great unexpected miracle is around the next corner; keep yourself open and flexible to the possibilities.

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Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 9: Your Achievement Management System

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 19, 2012

We are over half way there! you should be proud that if you have done this and stuck with it, you are doing more than 99.5% of the rest of the world. WOW how amazing is that! keep it up and if you have fallen behind dont worry just work as hard as you can to catch up.

Here is Darren!

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 , 8

Wow! We have covered some incredible ground thus far! You have your ambitious and appropriate goals that are based on your strengths and opportunities and have been whole-life balanced. You know who you want to become, who you want to serve and you have the strategic plan of action to achieve all your worthy goals.

Now it is time to create an execution system to implement your plan in the real world—your world.

Some of the best of intentions and greatest plans have failed because there wasn’t a system of execution to see them through. When it comes down to it, your new plans, your new actions, your new behavior, have to be implemented into your monthly, weekly and ultimately daily routine. A routine is something you do every day without fail… and eventually without thinking about it.

Consider this: Anything you are successful at you have probably developed a routine for it. How do you remember to keep your teeth healthy, your ears clean, your skin hydrated, your pantry full, the kids’ homework done, etc. You have incorporated the daily behaviors into a routine.

We also develop routines to keep ourselves sane. If we had to consciously think about every step of each ordinary task—making breakfast, driving the kids to school, getting to work, and so on—our lives would grind to a halt.

Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do.”

In an interview, John C. Maxwell told me, “You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.”

I’ve met and worked with many great achievers, CEOs and “superstars.” I can tell you that they all share this one commonality—they have developed systems for accomplishing their necessary daily disciplines. A daily routine built on good habits and disciplines is what separates the most successful amongst us from everyone else.

So, we now need to take your big goals and your strategic plan to achieve them and build an OS (Operating System) for your life. In the attached worksheets I will help you build the appropriate MOOs—Methods Of Operation. There will be Quarterly MOOs, Monthly MOOs, Weekly MOOs and Daily MOOs.

Then I will give you one of the most profound documents of this program—it is called the Weekly Rhythm Register. It will take the half-dozen key behaviors/actions you need to perform and measure each day and each week and give you a dashboard of accountability and performance tracking. This is one of the documents I use when consulting clients as a central communication and accountability mechanism. My clients pay big bucks for this info, but because you’re committed to participating in this 8-week, life-changing course, you’re getting it free!

Download and complete the ACHIEVEMENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM along with the WEEKLY RHYTHM REGISTER. (Download 9; Worksheet 13) (NOTE: The links and passwords are sent via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, they will be sent with the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out in the evening following the published post.)

Any new realizations, insights or ‘ah-ha’s’ experienced going through this step of the journey? Share them in the comments below. In the next installment I will help you avoid one of the most common and biggest mistakes ambitious goal-oriented people make. It’s something that can cost you ultimate victory and great fortunes.

DB10_worksheet_set_9

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Darren Hardys DB10Y Part 8: Your Strategic Plan of Action

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 18, 2012

Hey all we are more then half way done! hope your keeping up! Your plan is very important, if you don’t have a written plan then you have fantasies. write your plan out then work your plan! Here’s Darren =)

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

The difference between a dream or fantasy and a goal you will achieve is: 1) writing it down (what we have already done) and, 2) outlining a specific plan to achieve the goal (what we will do in this installment). Now it is time to formulate your strategic plan of action.

I explained early on in this series how goals work (you can review here). When you know what you are looking for, it gives your mind a ‘new set of eyes’ to see the world around you. You begin to notice the people, resources and even ideas needed for achieving your goal. But if your goal is defined only by an audacious and distant destination, your mind may be thrown off by elusiveness and ambiguity. It doesn’t know what to look for to help you get there.

The mind operates best with precise instructions. A three-digit lock has 18,333 potential combinations. When you have the specific three numbers in the right sequence, opening the lock is easy. If you don’t have the combination—or precise instructions—opening the lock is almost impossible. Making a specific and strategic plan of action provides the mind with the instructions it needs to get you to your desired destination.

Making a plan to accomplish your goals can be compared to planning a cross-country road trip. If you were going to travel across the country, say, from my hometown in San Diego to Manhattan, you would consider the following:

1. Calculating your timeline—How much time do you you need to get there? (This should have already been established in Part 5: The GRAND Design.)

2. Mapping your route—Just like the combination of the lock above, there are thousands of ways to get there. What course will you take? What will be your intermediate destinations? Those are your milestones. Where are the milestones, how do you get to those locations, and when do you need to arrive at each to stay on track?

3. Who else is going? Who will be impacted (benefit or detriment) by the journey or accomplishment of your goal? Your spouse, your children, your partners, your team, etc.? Those are the ones you need to be sure are on-board with your plans.

4. Who do you need? Who do you need to help you on your long trip? Do you need someone else to do some of the driving? Do you need an expert tour guide once you get to the Grand Canyon (or some intermediate destination on the way toward your goal)? Do you need someone to review your map to be sure you didn’t make any mistakes? Figure out who you need assistance from to accomplish your goal.

5. What research is needed? Do you need to pull some research on Yosemite or Mount Rushmore? Do you need to research operational aspects of your car before starting? In order to complete your plan and make it to your goal, what additional information do you need to research and collect?

6. What resources are needed? Car, food, gas, camera, appropriate clothes, money; list everything you are going to need from the time you head out your driveway and arrive in the Big Apple. Figure out all the resources you will need between today and the accomplishment of your B.H.A.G.

7. What training do you need? Do you need to brush up on your driving safety skills? Training on how to operate your GPS? Training on how to use your laptop’s wireless connection in hot spots? What self-development training do you or those going along with you need in order for you to accomplish your goals?

In the Strategic Plan worksheets I will help you think through and chart a course toward achieving your top three 10-year and 2010 goals. You can apply this same strategic planning process to the achievement of any goal you desire from this point forward.

Download and complete the STRATEGIC PLAN Worksheets. (Download #8) (NOTE: We’ve made the worksheets accessible in one online archive. Only those subscribed to DarrenHardy.SUCCESS.com will receive a link and password to the archive via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, the link and password will go out again with the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out the same evening following the published post.)

Any new realizations, insights or ‘ah-ha’s’ experienced going through this step of the journey? Share them in the comments below.

In the next installment we will take this a step further by putting your plan into an Achievement Management System to be sure you are transferring plans into execution—yes, this is the action part of the equation.

DB10_worksheet_set_8

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Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 7: GIVE what you WANT

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 17, 2012

Good morning and here we go with part 7, give what you want, which is a very important factor in every area of life, giving what your wanting to get back. No matter what your thinking about having more of you need to give that to someone or something else.

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & PARTS 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

On your journey to achieving your goals, this one shift in your mindset can radically change how the world around you responds to and receives you.

The process of goal-setting can make you very myopic and ‘ME’-focused. If we really want to get what we want, we have to remember one of the oldest success principles: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Or as Zig Ziglar puts it: “You can have everything in life that you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”

What if that is true?

What if you knew for sure that everything you gave you would receive back tenfold? How much would you give? What would you give? How fast would you give it?

What do you want? What attributes do you need to accomplish your goals?

Do you need more courage? Who can you encourage?
Do you need more strength? Who can you help strengthen?
Do you need more belief? Who can you believe in?
Do you need more confidence? Who can you instill confidence in?
Do you need more love? Who can you love?

In the last installment we discovered what you needed to become to accomplish your extraordinary and ambitious goals. You might have looked back at the list and thought, But how? How can I be more confident, more courageous, bolder, happier, more positive, stronger… if I don’t feel that way?

This is how: Give what you need, give what you want. What you give to others, you give to yourself. And the added bonus is somehow it multiplies itself back to you.

I once had an employee we’ll call Suze. During a review it was identified that she lacked the self-confidence necessary for her to adequately perform her job responsibilities. I could have told her all the positive attributes she had and what I admired about her to boost her self-esteem (I did that anyway), but I knew that wouldn’t work. Others had probably tried before. I knew she needed to give what she was lacking to someone else in order to experience the transformation.

I asked Suze whom she knew who also suffered from a lack of self-confidence. The only person she could think of was a girl who lived a few doors down from her (let’s call her “Mia”). I asked Suze to spend time with the girl and see if she could help her improve her self-esteem. After talking with Mia about her interests and how she spent her time, Suze learned the young girl played soccer, but was too timid to excel at it. Suze was a former all-state soccer player in school and committed herself to tutoring the girl in the sport a few evenings a week.

Suze not only spent time coaching Mia in soccer, but she also talked with her about other aspects of her life. As a result, the Mia’s soccer performance improved dramatically, and her self-esteem was significantly boosted because of the interest Suze showed in her life. Witnessing this transformation, Suze felt valued, important and saw the difference she could make in another person’s life. Her own self-esteem expanded in spectacular fashion. She became one of my most successful public relations agents and went on to many other successes.

In the download documents, I want you to decide what key attributes you need to accomplish your big, hairy and audacious goals; then figure out how you can go about giving that very thing away to others.

When you look at the world with an eye toward how you can give, instead of simply focusing on what you can get, the thing you desire will beat a path to your door.

“Giving starts the receiving process.” —Jim Rohn

Download and complete the GIVE TO GET Worksheets (Download 7). (NOTE: We’ve made the worksheets accessible in one online archive. Only those subscribed to DarrenHardy.success.com will receive a link and password to the archive via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, the link and password will go out again with the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out the same evening following the published post.)

If someone is looking for help in an area, or if someone is willing to offer their help, you can announce that in the comment section below. I want this to be a forum where you can dialogue with each other and support each other. Please post only sincere commitments to serve and give, and not agenda-driven solicitations. They will be deleted.

Now we have all the pieces to the puzzle and a clear view of what the end picture is supposed to look like. The next installment focuses on the development of the plan of action—the step-by-step process of doing and achieving all that we have laid out thus far.

DB10_worksheet_set_7

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Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 6: The MAGIC Factor to Achieving Your Goals

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 14, 2012

I know its the weekend but the year is quickly ticking away! and I know you want to keep working on this and setting your dreams and goals and designing your life the way you want it.

so I hope you enjoy the weekend and are having fun working on this, mine is half way done and plan on getting more knocked out this weekend my self.

Enjoy!

 

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & PARTS 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Typically, the first thought that comes to mind after writing down a goal is, “What do I need to do to accomplish this?” That, unfortunately, is not the right question to ask.

Let me give you an example—When I was single and ready to find my wife and be married, I made a long list of the qualities of the perfect woman (for me). I filled up more than 40 pages describing my wife to be in great detail—her personality, character, key attributes, attitudes and philosophies about life, tastes, interests, even what kind of family she’d come from, culture, and of course physical makeup down to the texture of her hair, etc. I wrote in depth what our life would be like and what we’d do together.

I then had my goal and it was specific, measureable, attainable (I hoped!), relevant and time-sensitive.

If I then asked, “What do I have to do to find and get this girl?,” I might still be on that butterfly chase. Jim Rohn taught me, “Success is not something you pursue. What you pursue eludes you. Success is something you attract by the person you become. If you want to have more, you must become more.”

So what I did was to look back at every aspect on the list and ask if I had those attributes myself. Additionally, I asked myself this question: What kind of a man would a woman like this be looking for? Who do I need to become to be attractive to a woman of this substance?

I made a long list of all the traits, qualities, behaviors, attitudes and characteristics that I assumed a woman of this caliber would be looking for in a man. I filled up 40 more pages describing who I needed to become. Then I went to work on becoming those qualities.

Guess what? It worked! As if she was peeled off the pages of my journal and appeared in front of me, my wife is exactly what I described and asked for, in almost eerie detail. The key was my getting clear on who I’d have to be to attract and keep a woman of her quality, and doing the work to achieve that (and I’m still working on keeping that part!).

Let me give you another example to bring this home for you. Let’s say your goal is to earn another $100,000 this year. Now we need to ask the question, ‘Who do you need to become to be an extra $100,000 valuable?’ Your answer might contain some attributes—stated in the positive, “I am”—such as:

  • I am a disciplined master of time efficiency.
  • I focus solely on high-payoff and high-productivity actions.
  • I wake up an hour earlier and review my priority objectives each morning.
  • I fuel my body properly and exercise four days a week so I am energetic and highly effective each work hour.
  • I feed my mind ideas and inspiration that will support and bolster my passion.
  • I surround myself with peers and mentors who elevate my expectations and prod me to rise to greater levels of discipline, commitment and achievement.
  • I am a smart, confident and effective leader. I seek and cultivate the strength and greatness in everyone around me.
  • I deliver excellence to my clients and continually find ways to ‘wow’ them, encouraging repeat transactions and abundant referrals.

Before you can have, you must do. And before you can do, you must become.

To achieve something you have never achieved before you must become someone you have never been.” —Les Brown

In the download documents I will walk you through the process of discovering all that you need to become in order to achieve all that you desire. We will go through the characteristics, behaviors and disciplines you need to adopt as well as the behaviors you need to expand on and maybe the ones you need to eliminate altogether. We will figure out together how to become the person who would achieve your goals, and would deserve them.

Download and complete the MAGIC FACTOR Worksheets. (NOTE: The links to the worksheet downloads are sent via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, it will go out again with the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out in the evening, following the published post.)

What are the top few ways you need to change or improve your behavior, habits or disciplines in order to achieve your goals? I encourage you to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

In the next installment I have another big secret to getting all you want. This single shift in focus can alter the results you get in every area of your life 180 degrees.

DB10_worksheet_set_6

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Darren Hardy’s DB10Y Part 5: This is it—The GRAND DESIGN!

Posted by Brandon Dillon on January 12, 2012

OK we are up to Part 5! I hope your keeping up with your workbooks and designing the best next 10 years of your life, and I will be posting more of the work books as we go along there is about 6 more.

well here it is enjoy and as always feel free to ask questions and comment.

Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & PARTS 1, 2, 3, 4

Are you ready?
Ready to write (and right) your future?
Ready to be bold, dream big and put it (your aspirations) on the line (literally)?
Ready to proclaim your BHAGs (Big, Hairy and Audacious Goals)?

This is it. It’s time for the GRAND DESIGN.

This is actually the easy part. You knew about goal-setting before this course—how to make a list of what you want to accomplish in the next one to 10 years.

The difficult part has been the process we have gone through to get here—figuring out who you really are, assessing how you’ve done in life so far, and most important, what assets, strengths and opportunities you have to work with going forward. We’ll come to another big challenge later in the series when we work on figuring out how to take the dreams, ambitions and big goals from your Grand Design and develop the plan of action to achieve them. But right now we’re going to focus on developing your Grand Design. And as a result, you’ll identify the person, the accomplishments and the life you have always wanted to have.

The links to the Guidelines document and the entire set of worksheets to design your 10-year and this year’s goals are listed in the RSS feed excerpt sent to your inbox. The Guidelines document contains subtle and seemingly inconsequential instructions and questions. But following these instructions and writing your goals will help you transform your wishes and aspirations into results. We will also “scrub” all your goals to make sure they are S.M.A.R.T., BALANCED and will ultimately produce the whole-life success you desire.

Download and complete the GRAND DESIGN Worksheets – download 5. (NOTE: The links to the worksheet downloads are sent via the e-mail feed. If you are just now registering, the current and prior links will be in the next feed. E-mail feeds typically go out in the evening, following the published post.)

Before you begin this exciting process, I want to prepare you with a few thoughts:

Go BIG. Your tendency may be to prejudge your ability to have and achieve what your mind conceives, but let it flow. You may also prejudge your “worthiness” to have what your mind wants, but let it go.

It has been proven countless times by average people with meager beginnings who have risen to become extraordinary, world-changing achievers: Anything you can clearly visualize and genuinely desire is within the realm of possibility for you.

Or as the great Napoleon Hill put it, “Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, the mind can achieve.”

Your mind doesn’t care about the size of your goals. If you set little goals, you’ll achieve little goals; if you set big goals, you can achieve big goals. And for the most part it takes just as much time, energy and life force to achieve big goals as it does little ones. So don’t hesitate and Go BIG!

Ask. We have been given a great promise that requires very little from you… only to ask:

“Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you.” —Matthew 7:7

Expect. You are called to greatness. Answer the call. Expect greatness from yourself. Your responsibility is to live out your greatest potential and be the best you possibly can be. Right here, right now.

Expect little and, as a result, receive little. Have great expectations.

Fear not. Lastly, I leave you to consider this passage from Marianne Williamson’s A Return to Love:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us, it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Do you have some BHAGs you want to publically declare? Questions, observations, encouragement for others? We welcome your comments.

Sooooo much more to come! We have now envisioned our dream house and built the foundation, but we still have to figure out all the materials, resources and the needed construction plan necessary to build this house of your dreams. Until the next installment…

DB10_worksheet_set_5

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