Most days are great

When we think about how relatively good we have it in life, most days are great. We have the occassional reminder when we hear of a natural disaster ravaging a certain part of the world and we go home to food, clothing, water, and a bed to sleep in. We have the occassional reminder when we watch the news and hear of a crime or murder story and think about the relative safety we usually live in. We have the occassional reminder when we see a neighbor go through a hard time while we live a fairly busy but great life. When you really think about it, reminders of how good we have it are everywhere.

Sure, we will have some tough times on occassion. It’s part of life. Some of those tough times test our endurance and patience. But even during those tough times we can still look around and say “even so, my life is still great”. Some of the people I look up to most looked at the things they had during hard times, not the things they were lacking.

The more you look around at the good things in your life, the more you will see them. And the more you will realize that most days are great.

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Give in, give out, and give up!

Sounds demotivating, doesn’t it? But if you want to find real success and real happiness in life, you’ve got to do these three things. Let me explain.

Give in
Give in means to give yourself opportunities to grow into who you want to be. That may be personally, professionally, or any other way. You have to elevate yourself before you can help others do the same. Find ways to develop your talents, career, passions, etc; and don’t feel selfish about spending this kind of time on you. It may only take a few minutes per day and you can start to see results fairly soon. Give in!

Give out
Give out means that when you’ve reached a point that you can give to others by teaching, training, sharing, helping or any other way, you do it! By lifting those around you, many things can happen. If you lift your boss by your own solid performance, that can only help your own and your bosses career. When you give to your spouse, you help your marriage. When you give to your neighbor, you help the neighborhood. The list could go on. The great thing is that when you do this, you help someone AND you elevate yourself! Give out!

Give up
We’ve all been blessed with god-given talents and abilities. Whatever god you believe in, you should thank him as often as you can for what you’ve been blessed with and give credit where credit is due. By doing this you realize how blessed you really are. This turns into more blessings, or at least a gradual realization of how much you have going for you.

These things can be done in any order. You don’t have to wait to complete one before moving on to the next. They all should be going on simultaneously. So Give in, Give out, and Give up! Watch great things happen as you do.

Simplify to succeed

Every weekend my wife and I have what we call our “impossible list”. You know, the list of all the stuff you want to get done, whether it be fun, work, projects, etc. We call it that because we never get through the whole list in one weekend. Sometimes that’s been, well, frustrating. How many times have you done this at home, or at work, or in life in general? You set yourself up to fail from the get-go because your list is just too big. I’ve learned I need to simplify to succeed.

Some might think this means lowering my expectations. Nope. All things can get done eventually, it just takes prioritizing things that are most important and putting those on a short, realistic list. Sometimes I’ve found that things that are way down on the list didn’t need much attention anyway, or worked themselves out over time.

It’s the important things that need attention. Make a short, realistic list of these. Once it’s knocked out, make a new short realistic list and be glad about the things you’ve accomplished, not what you haven’t.
Simply put: Simplify to succeed.

It’s OK to lose, as long as you win.

In the society we live in, a lot of attention goes to those who win or succeed. If you lose, it’s looked on as bad or shameful. How often, though, do we see the big stories of the winners or the successful and think “how long did they lose until they finally won?” The thing that’s easy to forget is that most of those winners or successful people experienced a fair amount of hard times, failures, and loss before they got the big win.

So we are in our own lives. We have to remember when we are in those hard times, those losing times, that we have to learn from it. Maybe today isn’t our day. But if we learn from our losses, our hard times, our mistakes today, we can very well change things tomorrow that will lead to that win, that success, that thing we’re striving for.

It’s OK to lose, but learn from it so you can turn those mistakes into success. It’s OK to lose as long as you stick with it and win!

Lack of focus = lots of frustration

I’ve met with a number of people lately that are frustrated with the way their careers are heading. They’re frustrated with not getting promoted, or what they have to do every day at work, or why someone else is getting a better job instead of them.

One of my friends I spoke with was particularly frustrated, feeling any effort he’d given in his job wasn’t recognized and, therefore, didn’t lead to any recent promotion.
When I asked him what he really wanted to do for work, he didn’t know. He didn’t know exactly where he wanted to get to. Without that focus, he was just frustrated because everyone else seemED to be moving ahead.

I’ve recently gained more focus in different avenues of my life and, although I haven’t reached some of those goals yet, I actually know what I want to get to and that focus has helped me remove a lot of frustration. Once there’s a focus, you can be comfortable with yourself and your goals, because you know what you ultimately want to achieve.

Focus and watch your frustration fade.

Knowledge is power. Information is empowering.

I remember a wise man by the name of Neal A. Maxwell saying “with information comes inspiration”. How many times do we get frustrated or down because of something we know little or nothing about? Or get upset about life’s problems without doing our homework to figure out a solution? If we are going to really change something we need to learn more about the issue, understand how we can positively grow from it, and get information that will help us gain what we need answered in a positive way.
Knowledge is power. Information is empowering. Once you have the information to get through a challenge, you will begin to see what your options are in overcoming it.

Success takes action

“He’s all talk.” I remember hearing that phrase in junior high a lot. It was always in reference to the kids that wanted to show they were cool by threatening to beat someone up. Most never backed up those threats. High school came and the threats turned into one-upmanship. Again, most never backed up the “oh yeah, well I could do that, too” with anything more than an excuse to why they couldn’t right then and there. Then I get to adulthood and observe a number of people over the years (including myself occasionally) either lamenting their plight in life or vocally wishing they could do something great, but never doing anything about it.

I’ve learned this. Success takes action. I’ve never known anyone successful at anything that hasn’t taken some sort of action. I don’t know anyone that is truly successful that had all of that success fall in their lap and stay with them for the rest of their life. You and I have to work at it.

Remember that we have a lot going on in life. Family, career, finances, spirituality, and many other parts of our life will only see success if we make efforts to get them there. Find something today that leads to the success you want and take action!