How to Create the Perfect Day

How to Create the Perfect Day

I’m a firm believer that everyone desires to be great. I don’t believe that there isn’t one person on this earth that looks at their current state and every fully accepts where they are. While I do believe everyone desires to be great, not everyone will be great. Achieving great and amazing things will take tons of hard work. We’d like to imagine a world where success depends on that one “miracle moment.” However in reality, it’s founded on years of hard work. Day after day of continuous work, that leads up to one moment which opens up the doors to what you see now. If you’re anything like myself, it’s easy to get caught up in the really big moments and projects, and get turned off by the details. But since the little days lead to the big ones, lets focus on create the most amount of “perfect” days you can. Grab a sheet a paper or note taking app, create 4 sections and let’s get to work:

5 MITs (Most Important Tasks)

Start out by listing out the 5 most important tasks you have to do to get you closer to your goal. By having these tasks listed out for you in the morning, you should be ready to attack to them first thing in the morning. You may be surprised to know that having too much on your plate for one day can you make you oddly enough less effective. Setting a small attainable number of tasks figured and planned out will help you clear your mind and better prepare you for your day.

People To contact

For this next section, I want you to make a list of the people you need to text, call, connect, and email for the day. Of course these most likely won’t be the only people you connect with. The purpose of the section is to make sure that you connect with the people you need to that day. Don’t overlook this portion of your day. Working 25 hours a day won’t make a difference if you don’t have the network to elevate you.

Things To-Do

To me personally, there’s a difference between things to do and tasks to do. This varies from person to person. When you split up your life into the several areas it encompasses, there are certain things that you need to do habitually in order to maximize that area. For example, in order to succeed spiritually, you must keep up with your devotional time and studies. In order to succeed physically, you must work out regularly and watch your diet. So what are the things that you have to do today? Do you need to practice drums? Do you need workout? Do you need time to practice a new language? Prioritize it by putting it here.

Appointments

Saving the best for last are appointments. Appointments can be dinner meetings with a business partner, a date with your partner, church, etc. Anything you have to be at, where you’re unable to do other work at, is an appointments. Appointments should set the foundation for your day, so you should be making it a priority to only accept appointments you need to accept.

 

After looking over this list, think about the different things on this list. Now think about tomorrow. How can you make tomorrow more effective? How can you make a tomorrow one of those days future you will thank you for? Start now by making planning your tomorrow, today.

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Top 10 Quotes: Miles Monroe

Top 10 Quotes: Miles Monroe

“The greatest tragedy in life is not death, but a life without a purpose.”

 

 

“The wealthiest places in the world are not gold mines, oil fields, diamond mines or banks. The wealthiest place is the cemetery. There lies companies that were never started, masterpieces that were never painted… In the cemetery there is buried the greatest treasure of untapped potential. There is a treasure within you that must come out. Don’t go to the grave with your treasure still within YOU.”

 

 

“People generally fall into one of three groups: the few who make things happen, the many who watch things happen, and the overwhelming majority who have no notion of what happens. Every person is either a creator of fact or a creature of circumstance. He either puts color into his environment, or, like a chameleon, takes color from his environment.”

 

 

“Leaders don’t seek followers. Followers are attracted to leaders.”

 

 

“Humility is simply believing and accepting what God says about us, and God says that we are anything but worthless.”

 

 

“Poor people talk about money all the time, rich people talk about things, wealthy people talk about ideas.”

 

 

“The greatness of a man is measured by the way he treats the little man. Compassion for the weak is a sign of greatness.”

 

 

“Your job is your skill that they can fire you from at any time. But your work is your gift. No one can take that from you”

 

 

“The picture that we have of ourselves — our self-concept — will always determine how we respond to life.”

 

 

“We should not persue money. We should persue vision, we should persue purpose; for ourselves, for our country, and for our communities.”

 

 

Did I miss one?  Was there a quote that impacted you in particular? Leave a comment and let’s talk about it.

 

What Playing An Instrument Has Taught Me About Creativity

What Playing An Instrument Has Taught Me About Creativity

I think one of the most misunderstood concepts in today’s business world is creativity.  Not all to say people aren’t creative, I honestly think that we’re living in one of the most creative times in history; but I don’t think people understand it well.  Playing an instrument has taught me so much about what creativity is and what it isn’t.  I’ve been able to take what I learned from the playing the piano and been able use to become more creative in other areas of my life. Here are some of the most important lessons playing my instrument has taught me about Creativity:

There is no such thing as a “miracle moment”

I think one of the biggest things that people don’t understand about creativity is that there is no such thing as the big “aha” moment.  There will never be a day when you magically wake up and have the cure to cancer.  Creativity comes through a mix of multiple ideas and experiences unique to you.

Become an Expert.

The best way to come up with creative ideas is to first understanding everything you can about a subject first.  I’d like to look at it like finishing a puzzle.  Imagine your creative idea is like placing the last puzzle piece in a 1000 piece puzzle.  Would it be easier to put the puzzle together with 200 pieces already put together? Or 800?

Imagine the impossible and make it possible.

When making musical arrangements, many musicians start making their arrangements by making up musical ideas in their heads with no limit or restrictions.  Even though the music will eventually be edited, added to or subtracted from (yes there can be too much); by putting all your cards up front you set yourself up for a creative breakthrough.

Thoroughly understand the problem.

A lot of times we want to be creative for the sake of being of the creativity.  Creativity without purpose isn’t creative, it’s useless.  Before attempting to solve any problems with the use of creative tools, make sure you take 5 minutes to make sure you fully understand the problem and direction on how you want to go about tackling the problem.

Jumpstart: A Look into my Morning Routine

Jumpstart:  A Look into my Morning Routine

The number one way to have a great day, is to start off with a great morning.  Everything we do comes from some kind of foundation; whether that foundation be a great one or a bad one.  When you read up on the habits of the most successful, it’s almost impossible to name even one that didn’t contribute their success to a daily morning routine.  A morning routine is vital to your day, in my opinion, because you touch so many areas of life in that one period of time.  With all of our busy schedules, it can be hard to touch base on some of the important things in life.  Not all of us have the time to spend a good amount of time in the gym, find the time to really devote solely to our spiritual lives, and even making sure that we’re up to date with everything that’s going on in our lives.  Instead of searching for little moments in our day to fit these, we can prioritize them in the morning keeping us at ease.  They also provide what I believe to the most important reason for having a morning routine: mental clearness.  Have you ever felt like you just had too much on your plate?  You didn’t know what you had to do next?  Like you had an insurmountable amount of things to do?   Man, oh man do I have some good news for you.  I think to really get the point across I want to go into detail about my own morning routine and how that generally goes (nobody’s perfect).  If you want anymore ideas about how you can go about creating your own morning routine, check out mymorningroutine.com.  It’s an awesome website that interviews many successful people and goes into to depth.  Because you get perspectives from different people from different places in life, you can get a better idea of what you need for yourself.

To start, I’ll generally get up around 7 AM on the dot, and shake off the sleep cobwebs.

Once that’s taken care I start with:

Prayer/Devotion

As a man of God first I wholeheartedly believe everything I am able to do and accomplish is a direct result of the blessings the Lord continues to give me everyday.  As I strive to build a stronger relationship with him, setting aside sometime to spend with the Lord in prayer becomes more and more necessary everyday.  Sometimes it’s as deep as praying all the way the 30 minutes, and sometimes it’s as easy as reading some scripture and saying thanks for waking up.

 

Once that’s finished, I get dressed cause it’s time to…

Workout

Luckily for me, I have a basic gym setup easily accessible for me with the basics that I need to keep myself in decent shape.  One hour = 15-20 minutes of cardio, 40-45 minutes of lifting and exercise.  If I’m feeling up to it, I’ll always have the option to workout later in the day.   But by getting the absolute basics in, at least I can be at ease knowing I’m going forward.

 

Get Connected

At this stage, it’s time to see what’s going on in the world.  I’m not responding to any messages or e-mails yet, I’m strictly taking the time to catch up on the important highlights that I need to know going forward.  I personally have a subscription to the Wall Street Journal (wsj.com) that I just skim for the stories that stick out for me, read up on my sport stories, browse the financials and then that’s about it.  No need to be to through here.

 

Plan The Day

Eliminate all the unnecessary thinking here!!!  This is honestly my favorite part of my morning routine because it puts me at ease mentally and spiritually.  This portion of my routine is very simple yet, yet extremely crucial.  Simply make two lists:  Things to Do  & People to Contact.  Once it’s listed, THAT’S IT.  If you can’t think of it at that time, it can’t be that important.  This process helps me personally so much because now instead of wondering “what do I have to do next?”, the question to be asked is now “what else do I have to do to be done for the day?”.

 

Contacts

People that talk to me on the regular know this all too well.  I generally don’t even touch my messenger app until after 9:30.  The only person reaching me before then is my girl, and even she has to keep me in line occasionally because she loves her early morning Good Morning Texts.  At this point in the day, I’m spending about 30 focused minutes responding to all my text messages, emails, requests, setting appointments, booking services, reaching out to people, saying happy birthday, and anything else that requires me to reach out to other.  Yes.  I do have the whole day to take of this.  No.  Ain’t nobody got the time to do that all day.

 

Eat The First Frog

A.k.a. get to work.  I take a stab at the biggest task on my list and I look to go ahead and get it taken care of before I head out to work. This step is CRUCIAL because it builds the momentum I need to attack the day at full force.  If I can tackle the most difficult task on my list, what’s stopping me from knocking out everything else?  You gotta love the way the mind works.

 

I hope this insight into my own personal world helped you start to think about creating your own morning routine.  Don’t forget again you can also checkout mymorningroutine.com for more awesome ideas.

 

You’re Not as Busy As You Probably Think

You’re Not as Busy As You Probably Think

I know we’ve all been there.  We all have those days where we’re too busy.  We have to deny appointments, stay in the house all day, and work work work work, simply because there’s too much too do.  What would you say if I told you you’re not as busy as you thought?

I’ve been a victim of feeling busy as well, so I know how it feels to feel like there’s simply no time to spare.  But after reading the book, getting things done I’d really like to challenge that notion.  Have you really thought about the things you have to do

The first choice you’ll need to make is how you’ll capture all the information you’re imputing and of course you’ll have different options as to how you’re inputting that information. You can choose to take down your information through paper or electronic, but I’d recommend electronic because it’s a lot easier to organize.  There are two main apps that I used to get all the information that need, that would be Evernote and Wunderlist. —- add websites Evernote is your standard note taking app on steroids and wanderlust is your typical list app but on steroids.

Now I challenge you to list everything that you have to do.  Not just today or this week; everything.  This can be anything from a new proposal you need to make, a sponsorship pitch to simply dropping your clothes off at the dry cleaners.  The important thing is too dump everything out of your mind and put it on paper.  I can guarantee you that like me just doing this will give you an insane amount of relief.  You may also find that getting that burden off of your mind will encourage you to keep going harder, and really pushing to get everything out of your mind.  Once you get everything listed, I want you to write the next physical action you have to take.  Not a vague idea or abstract concept but the actual next step you need to take to get whatever you just listed done.  For example, if the task I want to get done is get a photo shoot done for a rebranding project, the first physical action would be to call the photographer to see what date they have available.  Listing the physical action takes the task and then makes it actionable. This process gives you a couple of benefits:

  1. You’ve gone from “having a lot of things to do” to knowing exactly what “a lot” is
  2. You’ve now made your to-do list actionable
  3. The clarity you now have allows you to only have to focus on the 2-3 important things to do for that day

Once you get everything put on paper and actually have in front of you instead of having it all in your head, I can guarantee you’ll say to yourself “I’m not as busy as I thought” and please under that’s the goal!  You never want to be busy for the sake of being busy, which we sometimes can believe we are, without getting things done.  But the goal is to be productive.  By clearly defining what you need to get done, and getting it taken care of without the extra stress you’re setting yourself up for stress-free positivity

 

 

Get “Getting Things Done: Stress Free Productivity” by clicking here

 

Thought of the Day: The Philosophy of “Quality”

Thought of the Day: The Philosophy of “Quality”

As a leader,  learn to adopt the philosophy of quality.  One of the most important and frequent decisions you’ll have to make is the choice of quality vs. quantity.  We choose the level of quality we will experience in life.  Now don’t think for a second that I’m only speaking in regards to materialistic things such as clothes, houses, or cars.  This philosophy has more to do with the intangibles such as education, support, and motivation.  However, this is also not to say you shouldn’t prioritize upgrading the level of quality in the material as needed.  Let me repeat this one few more times.

as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  as needed. as needed.  

This concept isn’t actually about the materialistic, most people have that down already.  However, the intangibles… not so much.  Where people take the time to invest their money in buying bigger houses; it’s mind boggling to think about how many people fail to invest time in their marriages.  While people are ecstatic with the idea of dropping their hand-me-downs for the newest name brands, it’s strange to see how they can’t stand the idea of dropping their drag-me-down friends for the ones the push you further towards your goals.  Again, this isn’t to bash upgrading what you buy, but if you aren’t, it’s a “what’s the point” type of situation right?

Then again, that’s how I see it.  What’s your perspective?  Drop it in the comment section below and let’s start a conversation.

How to Learn a New Skill

How to Learn a New Skill

What’s something you’ve always wanted to do?  Ever been interested in learning how to play piano, how to snowboard, or how to deliver a great speech? These things to do take time, but they may not take as much time as you think.  In order to grow, you need to continually update your skill.  Overtime, you need to be constantly updating your skills so you remain valuable while the times change.  At first glance, learning a new skill looks daunting and seems like it will take a lot of work that you may not feel like investing. But by breaking it down to three smaller steps, you’ll see that it may not be as hard as you once thought.

 

Get Over the Mental Hump

Before even attempting to learn a new skill, or trying to adopt a lifestyle of just learning new things you need to have the proper mindset first.  The first thing you need to understand and fully accept is that learning a new skill is not easy.  In fact, it can be very challenging. But you have to accept and take it on straight on.  One of the best things you can do is pre-commit.  Mentally commit yourself to dedicating however much time it takes to learn the skill.  If you go in with a “dabbler’s mindset”, you’ll always seek the easy way, because you always had.  It’s better to assume the worst for yourself.  Plan to learn as if you know future is going to be lazy, unmotivated, and unwilling to put the work in.  By committing yourself to putting the work in and setting up your environment in a way that promote success; you’ll prevent failure.

Make it Specific

Why do you want to learn this skill?  Defining your goal will help you save a lot of time and energy every time.  There is a huge difference between the time it takes to become a world-class chef and being able to provide a quality meal for your family.  A great way to define this is by asking yourself, “What is the problem I’m trying to solve by learning this skill?” or “Why is the skill important to me?” Again if you’re learning to play the piano to play at your families next get together, you probably won’t need to put as much as work in as someone that wants to backup Bruno Mars on his next world tour.

Breakdown the Skill

Once you have your skill and you’ve made it as clear as possible, you need to make it even clearer than that.  Many big skills such as public speaking, playing the guitar, or even painting a portrait are just made up of smaller skills.  For example, I’m a blogger; however I don’t just blog.  I have to write, research, network, use social media, understand SEO, master WordPress, understand basic photo-editing skills, and apply basic development skills such as discipline and perseverance.  If you’re someone that wants to become a better blogger, focusing on each piece individually elevates you as a blogger in general.  The trick to doing this however is understanding that you don’t have to do everything.  The 80/20 rule states that 80% of your results come from 20% of the work you do.  So, in the case of the blogger I would put a bigger focus on the 20% of skills that are more crucial to my success.

Practice!!!!!!!!!!

So you’ve specified the skill, then you broke it down into smaller skills.  What now?  From here, watch three videos online or read three books on the skill.  This will help you figure out what the most crucial skills/concepts are, then DROP THE BOOKS AND START PRACTICING.  You must understand that anything that stops you from deliberately practicing the skill is a distraction, and too much learning can be one of those distractions.  Your brain is muscle and like a muscle it must be worked and trained in order to perform better.  Like a muscle, you must also understand that you can’t get the all the results you want in the short-term. You must put the work in day-by-day and consistently and then you will get the results you are looking for. If you need assistance on creating the best days possible feel free to check out my previous post on daily planning here.

 

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