Saturday, 30 April 2016

Am I going to(o) fast?

A guy that I follow on Facebook talks occasionally about his fasting programs. This is where he only drinks water for ten days or so. It is apparently good for you as it flushes out all of the bad stuff in your body and gives you more energy. That sounds weird doesn't it because you would think that food gives you energy and then you would be able to do more things, exercise harder and generally feel better about yourself.

Anyway, apparently what happens when you fast is that the first three days or so are hell but after that the body starts looking for alternative forms of energy and it starts eating into your fat reserves and if you are like me you probably have quite a bit floating around. So it eats into your fat reserves and because your body is not busy digesting the food that you have gorged on, you start feeling really energetic. My friend also tells me that you start to smell bad too but I suppose everything can't be perfect.

After reading this I decided to find out for myself. I read a couple of books and I figured that ten day fasting or twenty one day fasting or whatever is probably not for me but there is something called intermittent fasting where on a daily basis you fast. So the two examples that resonated with me are the 16/8 fast in which you do all of your eating in an eight hour window and the 24 hour fast in which you basically eat once a day.

I tried it. I did the 24 hour one and it is interesting. I don't recommend doing it everyday. Maybe two or three days a week. Since I live by myself I also find it easier as I'm not dictated to by other people's diet requirements. I found for me the best time was to eat when I got home at night. A lot of people say that is bad but I was finding that I wasn't eating a lot anyway because I didn't feel that hungry and as you probably can imagine after all of that fasting the scales are looking quite good when you weigh yourself. So why would you want to ruin that by eating junk food just to get your calories up?

My friend who is an expert in weight loss says that he wouldn't recommend doing it but if you are going to you would have to ask yourself if you will still be doing it in one years time.

I assure you that some days are difficult and other days are great. I remember one day in which I felt like I was on a real high. It was about 5pm in the afternoon. I hadn't eaten anything for about 19 hours and I felt great. All of my senses seemed very heightened and it was like I was almost floating on air. It was crazy.

This is just my opinion and I'm not a doctor but it works for me and maybe it works for you too but be careful. It would be interesting to hear other people's experiences.

Friday, 29 April 2016

HABITS Part 2

We have looked at the first 7 habits. Lets now look at the remaining 6 habits of successful people from this article.

8. They're positive.

This one is saying that successful people are aware of their thoughts. Most of us walk around in a daze not thinking about anything in particular and if we do it is usually about something negative.  and that filters into a negative outlook and it's all downhill from there. I know that for the last couple of months and probably even longer because I wasn't aware of it, I have been walking around in a very negative mood and believe me, it doesn't help. It doesn't help at all. It's my challenge to notice my negative thoughts and change them as quick as I can into positive thoughts. Turn that frown upside down, so to speak.

9. They don't follow the herd.

This one is especially difficult. We don't want to stand out, well most of us don't. We don't like that attention especially if it is negative attention but if you go with other people then you are just a follower and nothing really special is going to happen. I know that we are conditioned to stay with the herd because 20,000 years ago it meant that you were able to survive. It's actually good advice in the above article in that you create the herd and get other people to join it. I better get a mooooove on.

10. They have good etiquette. 

I'm sure my mother will approve of this. Is it important? I don't know. As far as I am concerned the jury is still out on this. The fact that I know what fork to use, is this going to get me that important deal? Maybe it might. I don't drink wine. Should I start drinking it to prove my sophistication? Actually I don't like wine, so why should I? Any comments on this one would be greatly appreciated.

11. They help others succeed. 

It's interesting reading this one because as I said in yesterday's post, it is scary to go ask for help but if this one is correct then they will be happy to help you as long as you show the right motivation and intelligence I suppose.

12. They dedicate 15 to 30 minutes a day to just thinking.

My friend and I call this TT. I don't really like this name as it reminds me of something else that I would rather forget but it does work. I mean we walk around all day, of course we are always thinking but we are not thinking deliberately, well at least I know that I am not. But to just sit down in a quiet spot and think about things, you may be able to come up with some great ideas and insights that will allow you to move forward and get things done at a great wait. I assure you sitting there for 15 to 30 minutes doing nothing is difficult but it is worth it.

13. They seek feedback.

It's scary going to ask for feedback, right? What if they say something that you don't want to hear? That's not very nice but sometimes it can really help you and you are able to grow from that wisdom. I read an excellent blog post about feedback the other day. I would recommend having a look. The link is here. This article is about giving feedback which I'm sure if you become the man or woman then you will be asked to give feedback.

That's it the 13 habits of successful people. I'm off to do some thinking time I hope you do some thinking time too.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

HABITS Part 1

This article appeared on my Facebook feed this morning. It was very interesting so I thought that I would take the time today to comment on it and give my opinion on the habits of self-made millionaires. This article was written about this book written by Thomas C. Corley. Anyway, lets go through the first 7 habits today and look at the final 6 tomorrow. Sounds good?

1. They read consistently.

A few years ago my friend and I read a book called Focal Point written by Brian Tracy. In that book he suggested that you get up early and read for one hour in your field. By field I don't mean going out into the farm and sitting in the paddock but reading about your business or career. So if you are a salesperson, read about sales. My friend and I took this advice and it has taken on a life of its own in which we affectionately call it GH or Golden Hour. It has had other names over the years but it remains the same, read, summarise, and then send to the other bloke to summarise and send back. Reading is great. But as the heading says, do it consistently.

2. They exercise.

Well, I must admit that I exercised my arse off today. I had to drink a lot of water to replace all the sweat but I did it. Did you? According to this article the more you exercise the smarter you become. I know a few people who are examples that that suggestion may not be entirely true but what do I know? Exercise is good. That is undisputed.

3. They hang out with other successful people. 

Yep. I better find some successful friends. How do you define success though? Is it how big their bank account is? I suppose that depends on what you think. I'm sure there are some successful sportsman out there who don't have a lot of money coming in but they are successful in their chosen sports and are going to Rio this year.

4. They pursue their own goals. 

This is an interesting one. Many people pursue something that other people want them to do and it isn't really what they want to do or what they are passionate about but it is hard to go against expectation. It is a gamble and you could get the whole "I told you so" getting chucked in your face but if you are really passionate about it, go for it and as I saw on Instagram this morning nobody cares once you start making money.

5. They get up early.

This is a difficult one for most of us. I know that I think I am a morning person but I'm not really. I suppose you can develop that habit. It seems that this getting up at 5am is a good thing. I should try it. Oh that's right, I am. I better set my alarm for 5am tomorrow morning now. Tomorrow is a public holiday here and it would be very easy to sleep in.

6. They have multiple sources of income.

This is a crucial one and something that I haven't come to terms with yet. I need to start producing stuff so that it can creating income while I sleep. Any ideas?

7. They find and check in with mentors.

Got to find myself a mentor. It seems that this is crucial. I don't know about you but I find that the most intimidating one.
"Hi! I haven't got any money and my current situation is shit but can you help me so I can have the same amount of success and the same number in my bank account as you?" That's scary.

OK everyone that is the first seven habits. We will look at the final 6 tomorrow. In the mean time I have just bought Thomas C Corley's book and will start reading it as part of my Golden Hour reading now. I'm looking forward to it.

I'll see you tomorrow.

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Morning has broken

I finished reading this book yesterday. The Miracle Morning is basically a guide on how to make the most of your mornings so that you can kickstart your day and get stuff done. It is quite an easy read and it shows the author Hal Elrod's system that he created for himself that has turned his life around. He created the S.A.V.E.R.S system which I would like to go through today and give my opinion on it.

So, lets get into it.

First of all he says that should get up at 5am and do these things. Still interested? Yes those two letters and one numeral almost put me off too.

Now, this isn't in any particular order just following the SAVERS spelling but he suggests that you work out what the best order is for you. So that might mean that the exercise part is last. But that is up to you.

SAVERS

S is for Silence. This is for me, meditation. Of course other forms are fine like prayer. For me this is one of the most difficult things as you basically have to clear your mind. Not think of anything. For those of you out there who have never tried meditation that is bloody hard. Try sitting there for 5 minutes and not thinking of anything. I challenge you to sit there for 5 seconds. However, if you do it properly you can feel really good at the end. I will start with 5 minutes and hopefully hold it to ten minutes over time.

A is for Affirmations. I have heard various opinions on affirmations. Some people say they work, other people say they are terrible and they don't help you at all. Naturally I will save my opinion until a month or so. All I can say now is if you convince yourself that you are going to become what you want to become then I say that affirmations must play a role somewhere along the line and I'm willing to give it a go.

V is for Visualisation. The late Martin Crowe, the former New Zealand cricketer was big on visualisation. He would visualise his innings before he went out. He would see the the bowlers running into him and then him playing the appropriate shot. (I must admit that it must have been quite scary visualising Malcolm Marshall or Joel Garner running in at him) In our cases you might not be facing the nasty fasties of the 1980's but you can still visualise yourself making that sale, penning that deal, building the business.

E is for, yes you guessed it Exercise. This morning I went to the gym because the 7.30 class suited my schedule today but I would look to do two rounds of Tabata. Maybe squats and sit ups. That takes about ten minutes and you get a really good work out. For those if you who don't know what Tabata is, it's 20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest for 4 minutes. 8 rounds in total. I think that it is really suitable for The Miracle Morning. You should give it a try. You can see a video with music that will guide you here. Don't worry, you don't have to do the same exercises as this guy.

R is for Reading. He suggests to read for ten minutes. My friend and I have been doing this for 5 or 6 years. Reading and then commenting on what we have read and sending it to each other. You do get to read quite a few books over the course of the year and at cocktail parties you have a lot to talk about. So, pick up a book and read it.

S is for scribing. Basically this is journalling where you write down your thoughts and concerns. In the old days it was called keeping a diary. These days it is called journalling. I thought that this blog would be the same as journalling but I was reliably informed that that is not the case. Anyway, you just need to write down stuff for 10 minutes. It goes quickly, believe me.

There you have it Hal Elrod's Miracle Morning. I suggest you get a hold of his book and have a read and then tell me how it goes. I hope you get the results you are looking for.

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Instagram Wisdom

Do you use Instagram? I do. I have just under 200 followers. Wow! I must be  popular. Of course there are some people on this app who have millions and millions of followers. The popular kids in school so to speak. It is interesting though when you follow some pages and they give you inspirational quotes and the like. Some are just Internet noise while others actually sound quite good.

Today I would like to go onto Instagram and flip through my feed and look at some of the quotes or motivational words and give you my take on them.

1. The first one is this one:



I find this one extremely interesting because most people ask this question with a verb, do. However, when you answer you are expected to give a noun. Have you ever noticed that? Of course don't focus on what your job title is, you focus on how you contribute. You focus on how you are going to change the world. 99.9% of the people don't want to hear exactly what you do because they can't relate to it. So you have to give a noun but the really interesting people will understand.


2.

Cheers to all the people who just want to be themselves and don't care about fitting in ...

Yep, if only life was that easy. It is a big problem when you are affected by what other people think of you because we are group oriented by nature and when you get the problem of the group running away from you, it can be deadly in some instances but the more you practice "not giving a shit" the easier it will become.


3.




Life is only as good as your mindset:

I've noticed recently that I have had a very negative mindset about most things and it is definitely holding me back. It is definitely slowing me down. I've noticed that the negative mindset, the negative chatter in my head is very nasty and I struggle to control it sometimes.


4.



This is an interesting one too. When you challenge yourself and go against the grain so to speak, the people who are going with the grain will not understand. They will try to tell you that you are wrong and they will try to explain to you that there way is the best for you. You have to stop listening to them and get on with it. Actions speak louder than words.


5.



This is a good one too. You have to accept your current reality. It doesn't mean that you are going to be like that the rest of your life but you have to realise that this is where you are. Forget about the stuff that went in the past. Of cords learn from your mistakes and then believe that everything is going to OK if you work at it of course.


6.



This is a good one to end this for me. I haven't been consistent. I'll do something for a few days and then quit or do something else and then I might come back to it. It isn't good and it hasn't got me anywhere in the last few years. My goal is to be consistent for the next week and then the following week and so on. Good luck to me.

Monday, 25 April 2016

ANZAC Day - Lest we forget

Dear Grandad, Dear Poppa

I thought that I would use this day to say hi and I hope that you are both doing well wherever you are.

Grandad, I wear your watch with pride. A couple of people this week have complimented me on it. That has made me very happy.

 I remember you sitting in your favourite chair watching That's Country. I never understood the attraction of that show but you seemed to really enjoy it.

Poppa, I never did (and still don't) share your fondness of grapefruit and gin but I still like watching rugby.

 I remember going with you to the Showgrounds on August 3rd, 1985 where Canterbury were very fortunate to draw with Manawatu 15-15. Even today, I'm so glad that I went with you to watch that game. I'll remember it for the rest of my life and not just because Manawatu drew with Canterbury.

Today I want to say thank you to both of you. You both left New Zealand shores when you were young. You both went to places that you had never been to before and probably never went to again. You went their for your country and for your family and because you believed in something. Because of you, both myself and your other grandchildren are able to live lives of freedom and opportunity. We take it for granted but we have both of you to thank for it.

Love Blair.


April 25th, 2016.

Sunday, 24 April 2016

To lie or not to lie, that is the question.

Is it OK to lie? That is the question that I want to answer today. Well, the answer is yes and no. I'm sure most of you guys out there have had this question, "Do I look fat in this?" Even if she does, you lie and say no. That's pretty obvious and depending on her mood you will get a big kiss or be told that you are lying. Anyway white lies are OK because as Forrest Gump's mother said, "they don't hurt anyone." That also reminds me of a scene from Friends where Ross and Rachel were teaching Chandler about lying.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChEu7r7-kWw

"Do I look fat?" "No!"

"Does size matter?" "No!"

As Ross says it does go both ways.

However I have found in my experience that in the battle of the sexes in respect to lying there are different rules. It seems to me that women expect the man to be 100% honest but in saying that will have no problem in lying to the man. Double standard? The reason for that is that if the woman decides to lie that she can justify by thinking that the man might do something crazy and she will be in mortal danger which in some instances is a valid concern. So in that case lying is fine.

Last night I went out with a woman who said that she expects the man to be 100% honest and to never lie. Fair enough I thought until we started talking about age and it turned out that she had lied to me. She was 5 years older than she had said originally. Hmmm, "I expect you to be 100% honest but I can lie about my age."

I think in the above case it is not good to lie about age. At the end of the day age is just a number and you are only as old as you feel, so why lie about it?

Anyway, lets answer the question, is it ok to lie and the answer is as I said at the start, it depends. It depends on the situation and whether it will hurt anyone either physically or emotionally. Also you have to really think about it too. You might think the little lie doesn't hurt anyone but it could be a big ton of bricks on the other person. So proceed with caution.

Saturday, 23 April 2016

I like you

Yesterday, I talked about this article. We talked about thinking and what the best thinkers do. Today I would like to talk about likability. You can see the link for the article and like yesterday I would like to give you my take on it. The author talks about certain traits that people do that make people like them less. Anyway, here we go:

1. Humble bragging: This one talks about bragging about yourself behind the veil of self deprecating humour. I'm sure we all brag from time to time. I remember I used self-deprecating humour all of the time but I think I'm using it less and less. Self-deprecating humour in my opinion just makes you look like an idiot so why use it? By all means, play up your abilities but don't overdo it. No one wants to hear about it.

2. Being too serious: No danger of that happening. Seriously, I don't take anything too serious. Well, maybe a couple of things. The thing is that I see about this one is that the ones who take it serious are probably the ones with all of the money and they don't care if they are liked or not. So if you don't care about being liked or not then f**k them. Be serious.

3. Not asking enough questions: My friend told me a few years ago that there are two types of people, those who are listening and those who are ready to talk, in other words not listening to what is being said and concentrating on what he or she is going to say next. I am definitely in the latter. Someone will say something and that will remind me of a story and I am so anxious to get that story out that I stop listening to what is being said and just prepare to talk. However if I start asking questions then I might become more likeable. Be careful though, don't make it like an interview.

4. Emotional hijackings: I had a situation recently where I didn't throw all of the toys out of the cot but I could have and maybe a buzzy bee or two got thrown out. (For those of you who don't know, a buzzy bee is a toy from New Zealand. You can see below, Prince William playing with one.) Anyway, you have to keep your emotions in check because if you start throwing tantrums then it will probably come back and bite you in the bum later.




5. Whipping out your phone: This is the worst one and I hate it. If I do it I will tell the other person that I will. Then, although it is rude they will know. Concentrate on the moment, not your phone.

6. Name dropping: I have my Fijian Prime Minister story. Is that name dropping? Maybe, I'm not sure. The woman I was telling it to last week seemed to be impressed. As the article says, when you are doing it all the time then you are just fishing for attention and that is not the greatest.

7. Gossiping: It's not good. Enough said.

8. Having a closed mind: I think that I am pretty good at this. I have my opinions but I am happy to hear what others have to say unless they are far right-wing lunatics with their heads so far up their spiritual being's ass that it is ridiculous. Do you get my point?

9. Sharing too much too early: Yep, guilty as charged. I'm very good at this and I think that has caused some of my problems of the last few months and years. You want to stay a mystery for a little bit so that people wonder what is going on with you. I wish that I could take some of my own advice.

10. Sharing too much on social media: Yep, I must admit that I have put some stuff on social media or changed my profile photo on Facebook to get likes. It makes me feel good. I mean what a lot of BS, right? I shouldn't be relying on other people's acceptance to feel good about myself. I should feel good about myself regardless.

It's good to be liked but go about it the correct way, listen, concentrate on the other person and what they are saying and don't gossip. Sounds easy, doesn't it?

Friday, 22 April 2016

Thinking!!!

I was reading this article today and I thought that I would take the opportunity to comment on the 8 things that these people do. So according to this article what do exceptional thinkers do on a daily basis. Lets have a look.

1. They focus on the positive. I must admit that I have not been doing this a lot recently. I have been focusing on something that happened a couple of months ago which has really affected me a lot. Admittedly there has been a couple of positive things that have come out of it like weight loss but it has been difficult to think about that when you feel extremely sorry for yourself.

2. They spend time in solitude. This has been the most difficult time for me spending time alone. I do spend a lot of time alone and I don't mind it usually but it is difficult when I would rather be out and about but I must admit that it is the furtherest thing from my mind but I know for my own self-development that I should get out. I did try it once in the last month or so and it was not very successful.

3. They have a long-term vision. This is something that I definitely don't have. I was listening to an interview with Arnold (do I need to write his surname?) the other day and his thing was he had great long-term vision. He knew what he was doing, unlike me who has a vague idea. I think it all comes down to intensive thinking time. I get distracted quite easily especially with the Internet and where I am writing this at the moment it can be distracting but at the end of the day those are just excuses. I can train myself to not be distracted.

4. They have a mindset development routine. They give an example in the article about a morning routine. This is something that I have been trying to develop but of course I have a whole bunch of excuses. I go to bed late etc. I can easily go to bed earlier and wake up and really kickstart the day if I wanted to. Do I want to? That is the question.

5. They only associate with those who build them up. This is an interesting one. Why would anyone want to hang around with me in my mood at the moment? So if I want to hang around with positive people then I have to build up my positiveness. That makes sense doesn't it?

6. They eat clean and healthy. I must admit that in the last three months through choice and lack of appetite that I haven't been eating that much at all but when I do put food in my body it is for want of a better word, shit. Not healthy at all. I think this is crucial but overlooked by a lot of people. It is your fuel after all.

7. They find time to workout regularly. This is something that I have been doing. But think how much better I would if I was fuelling with lettuce than with chocolate. Something to think about.

8. They have an attitude of gratitude. This is something that I really need to focus on. Sometimes I forget that I am 188cm tall and that I have working limbs and and brain that functions well. A woman told me last weekend that I am very good looking. That was nice to hear. So I need to focus on the good things and be thankful for it.

Something to think about. I know I will think about all of these things. So, do you think I will be up at 5am tomorrow morning?

"Just be confident"

There are things we say to each other from time to time which although well meaning mean absolutely nothing and can be a waste of breath.

One of the things that my friend and I laugh about is the classic one, "Just be confident." You have been stamped on, you have felt like someone has kicked you in the guts with a pair of steel toed boots and you get the "just be confident." As I said I know that it is heartfelt but it is going to be  about as useful as a bucket on the Titanic.

Other classic ones are, "Just get over it" or "Keep busy" or "Just move on." Well, what do you think I am trying to do? It's a little bit more difficult than listening to your advice.

So next time someone is having a problem think carefully before offering advice you maybe making the situation worse.

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Taking ownership

The other day my friend mentioned about a guy who went from zero to hero in six months. He had been blogging for eight years and not getting anywhere. Then he made a decision and it all changed in a very short time.

The last couple of days I have been thinking about what he said. Basically this guy took ownership. I have been thinking about what ownership means and of course you out there may disagree with me but this is how I see it, you take responsibility. You don't give excuses, you don't say that I will do it tomorrow. You decide that you are not going to take shit from anyone or even from yourself. It means the buck stops here.

This means that you are responsible, no one else. You are the one that got you into the mess and you are the only one that can get you out of it because lets face it unless they are close friends or family no one else cares. They have their own problems to take care of. They don't want to hear your problems and other things because they have their own.

So, how am I going to take ownership? To be honest, I don't know. This is going to take a lot of thinking. Lets face it, things are not rosy for me at the moment and they may not be rosy for you either but if you can get out of it then you are well on the way.

Anyway, I've got some thinking to do.

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Mistakes make the man?

We all make mistakes and usually we make the stupid ones when we are not thinking straight and you get over emotional. The most important thing is not that you made it but that you learn from your mistakes and try not to make them again.

I have made some stupid mistakes in my life and I must admit that even now I keep on making them which isn't great especially for someone my age. You'd think that I'd know better. Anyway, I hope not to make these mistakes again and to become a better person because of it. That's the goal anyway.

Just remember, just because you stuffed up doesn't mean that you whole life is at an end. It means that you are at least getting yourself out there and giving yourself the opportunity to make those mistakes which at the end of the day is better than being perfect but not doing anything.

Mistakes are good as long as you learn from them.

Monday, 18 April 2016

Record everything

The self improvement gurus talk about trying to be a little bit better each and every day. That sounds all very good but how do you measure that? I think you measure it by writing everything down at the end of the day. You write down what you eat, what you did, who you spoke to. Basically you keep records and those records allow you to see where you are going wrong or even better where you are going right.

My friend runs a weight loss consultancy and his thing he tell his clients is to keep a food diary. Obviously by doing this you can see where you are going wrong but I think that it serves another purpose if you have to write these things down it gets a little difficult when you have to write donut or potato chips or "I sat home all day and watched television." It almost serves as motivation.

So, along with the planning yesterday, after you have made your plan for the next day you can write down everything that you have done for that particular day. It sounds as though it could be a lot of work but once you do it a few times and you have developed a system then it should become simpler.

So what should you wrote down? Here are my ideas for my life:

1. What I ate and drank?

2. What exercise did I do?

3. What money earning work did I do?

4. What reading did I do?

5. What self development activities did I do?

6. What social activities?

7. Who did I meet?

These are just example questions and you can add to them or delete them as you see fit.

Good luck. Tell me how it goes.

Sunday, 17 April 2016

To plan or not to plan. That is the question.

I was reading an article the other day and it was taking about what separates the billionaires from us mere mortals. The one thing that I got out of it was that these people don't separate their days into hours as we would do, the separate their days into minutes. They know that there is 1440 minutes in a day and they can account for every minute of that day. 

Yesterday I noticed that I wasted a lot of minutes. I went to the library to do some work and I had brought my lunch from the Mexican place down stairs and was planning to eat it while my computer was booting up. However, after that I watched a few Youtube videos and basically wasted a few moments more than I should have. Not good. 

They say that before you go to bed you should plan the next day and this is something that I seldom do. I have a rough plan in my head but that usually doesn't pan out the way I want.

So, what can I do? I am trying to blog everyday for the next 500 days. I can also plan each day the night before. I think that is the easy bit. The difficult part is working that plan and that is the challenge. 

I'll update you periodically. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Gambling on persistence

Earlier this week I talked about an important 'p', preparation. Today I would like to talk about another 'p', persistence. First of all I would like to quote a popular singer from the 1970's and 1980's. I'm doing this from memory so if I make the odd mistake don't pounce on me. Anyway, here we go:

"You've got to know when to hold them, know when to fold them, know when to walk away, know when to run." Most of you now are probably humming that great song from 1978. Kenny Rogers' The Gambler.

So what has this got to do with persistence? In every situation you get yourself in you have to know when to hold them, basically persist. In every situation you get yourself in you have to know when to fold them, basically look to do something else. In every situation you get yourself in you have to know when to walk away, basically say thanks but no thanks. In every situation you get yourself in you have to know when to run, basically get your butt out of that s**t as quickly as possible.

If you believe in the cards that you have been dealt then keep on persisting. Keep on pursuing because you have made that decision that it is important to you and you can make it a success and if you do give up then you might regret it and a wise man once told me that you should never regret anything because at the time you made the decision it was the correct decision for you at the time.

However if you see that there is literally no light at the end of that tunnel then get out of it as quickly as possible so that you can devote your time and energy onto something else that if you persist in that you might get the results that you need.

Remember, if the payoff is good then it is a great idea to persist. Don't die wondering unless you know that it is heading in the wrong direction.

Friday, 15 April 2016

The thief of time

I have a Phd in procrastination. I procrastinate on all things. Even this morning I procrastinated on writing this blog post.

People say that you should just do it which is pretty sound advice if you think about it. There is a rule in the online seduction community in which they talk about the three second rule. Basically, it means if you see someone you want to talk to you have three seconds to do it because any longer than that and you start to doubt yourself. You start over thinking things and if you are anything like me you chicken out. So if you think about doing it as the Nike ad says just do it.

The good thing about doing things that might worry you is that a big weight is lifted off your shoulder. You feel lighter and you have literally got it off your chest. You feel better and you feel lighter but if you procrastinate on it, it starts to feel heavier and heavier and heavier until it is weighing you down so much that you can't do anything else. It affects your whole life. It affects your work. It affects your health. It affects your eating habits. It affects your social life. All this because you couldn't get off your backside and do something that may have only taken a few minutes.

It's Friday morning and I basically have the morning off so I'm going to do something that I have put off all week. I've got to go and clean the bathroom. Not the most glamorous thing but I am sure that I will feel better when I am finished.

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Find the level

It's amazing when you meet someone playing on a different level to you. You just think what does this person have that you don't have and the simple answer is nothing. They have worked hard. They consistently improved themselves. They have consistently tried to expand their knowledge  and they have just done it to paraphrase the Nike logo. Sounds simple, doesn't it?

I wish it was but you have to commit to putting in that effort. The self help gurus out there ask you are you willing to pay the price. Are you willing to put in the sacrifices to be able to get to where you want to go?

Today Kobe Bryant played his last game in the NBA. He scored 60 points. After hearing that story I thought why is he giving it away? I mean with that kind of performance it sounds as if he could play for a few more years yet but he has decided to go out on top and good on him for making that decision.

In the book The Millionaire Fastlane MJ DeMarco talks about the difference between events and process. Most people are looking for an event to get what they want. Win the lottery or sign up to something to start a company but at the end of the day it is all about process. In other words, doing the business today so that you don't have to do the business tomorrow if you don't want to. You have a choice at the end of the day. That's the dream, isn't it?

Kobe Bryant practiced everyday and honed his craft. We didn't see all of that effort, we just saw the end of it in the numerous games he played but there would have been many hours behind those games on the practice court, taking his game to another level.

I encourage you to try and find those people who are playing on a different level and do what they do. Unashamedly copy them and see how far you go. You might emulate them. You might fail or even better you might go so far past them that you are shouting them dinner, not the other way around as it probably is now. That sounds good to me.

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Taking the info to create a better tomorrow

We all need some help from time to time. Whether that help comes from the people around you or it comes from a book or it comes from something like a movie you need to take that information and trust that the person that is saying it knows what they are talking about and adapt that information for the purpose that you want.

This morning I was reading a particular chapter in a book and it gave me an idea about something that I have to do in the next few days. It was something that I hadn't thought of and I am 99% sure that I will use it when I have to do the thing that I have to do.

My message today is to when you hear or read some kind of information don't dismiss it straight away. Analyse it, think about it and decide if it fits with you and what you want to do. In the end it might be a waste of time for you but it might work for you.

Good luck in what you have to do today. I read a good quote on Instagram this morning which said that if you do the work today then you tomorrows will be a whole lot easier.


Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Excuse me

It's interesting. That last couple of days I have been away from my usual routine. I stayed last night in a hotel and because of the unfamiliar surroundings it has been difficult to do things that I would normally do at home. When I think about that I think that it is a really bad excuse. I could have easily done my Tabata this morning  in the room where there was more room to do it. I could have written this blog post this morning rather than doing it at lunch time as I am doing it now.

I have written before that I am very good at making excuses but for me to continue on this journey, I need to stop making excuses to other people and of course myself.

A few years ago I read an article in the Japan Times. The Japan Times is a daily English language newspaper. It had an article in it about iiwake or in English, excuses. Basically it was a cultural piece talking about the different ways to make an excuse in Japan. At the time I never realised and to a certain degree I don't know now that you can't make excuses about your absence from work like you are going to the beach or something like that, you need to say something that makes you seem as if you are suffering as well as your colleagues.

It was a very interesting article and I still talk about it today even though it was published about 12 years ago.

Anyway, the point of this is to say that excuses don't help anyone, especially yourself and the less you use them the better your life will turn out. Well, that is how I see it anyway.

No more excuses and in the words of Nike, Just do it.

Monday, 11 April 2016

The most important P

I learnt to day that sometimes preparation is vital. What is that saying? Prior Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance. Well, I learned that very well today. I didn't prepare very well and I got found out.

So, what do I have to do? Before I go to bed each and every night I need to know what I am going to be doing the next day and do i have everything ready. If not I might need to get up early in the morning, well early than normal.

There is always temptation to go home at night and sit down and watch TV or in my case to jump into bed. By just delaying that bed time can save you a lot of time the next day.

I'm off to prepare for tomorrow. I'll see you then.

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Urgent versus Important

I read Stephen Covey's book a few years ago. I'm sure some of you have read it before, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. In the book he talks about urgent work and important work. Obviously important work is  important. It is your future, while the urgent work needs to be done now.

This week starting from tomorrow I have the problem of a lot of urgent work and not enough time to do important work. It is important to get money and to be able to pay your bills. Believe me your state of mind is a lot better and you don't have that feeling in your stomach like you are doomed. You can literally function better. However you still need time to do important work.

I must admit that I do make a lot of excuses and the number one on that hit list is that I have been working too much and I haven't had time. Now, I'm sure if you are anything like me if you look back at each an every day you will find times where you literally stuffed around and did things that are not pushing you forward. I joined a private library last year which I use as a work space. I should go there a lot more than I do but I think unless I have four hours spare then it is a waste of my time but if I go there and I do one hour of focused work then that is good isn't it?

So my challenge this week is to try to focus on using my time productively and in a focused manner and to get the stuff done that is important whether I want to do it or not.

Good luck to me.

Saturday, 9 April 2016

Making the right decision.

It's interesting when you are trying to change the way you are doing things. It is really difficult to change and without thinking about it, you will go back to the way you did things before by default. This is the main thing that I have to take into account when I am doing things.

I have read a couple of books which talk about a confidence account and basically what it says is that you have to ask yourself if the decision you are about to make is going to help your confidence or it is going to hurt your confidence. This could mean anything, right down to what you eat or even what you are wearing. You could choose to watch TV or you could choose to read that book. At the end of the day we all make decisions and where we are today is because of those decisions we make.

So from now on I have to make those correct decisions. Obviously you and I are not going to get it right 100% of the time but if you look for getting the perfect percentage then you might get it right 50% of the time which maybe good. I'm not sure.

Anyway, from now on I will try to think before I make any decision and hopefully they will take me on the right track.

This morning I had a decision to make. Stay in bed or go to the gym. I went to the gym. I think that is good. it was the correct decision and I am able to have a good day because of the good start to the day.

Friday, 8 April 2016

Burning the midnight or morning oil

Are you a morning person or a you a night owl? It's an interesting one. Last night I went to bed at about 12.30 and by the time I went to sleep it would have been closer to 1am. Then because of my schedule today I had to be up at around 5am so I had only about 4 hours sleep. As I write this I feel fine but I know that I will get tired sometime during the day. How can people survive on so little sleep? I have absolutely no idea.

Anyway, this morning having to get up at 5am made me think about mornings and the proper use of them. I have been reading this book recently called The Miracle Morning. It basically tells the story of the author managing to turn his life around by waking up early and getting shit done.

I don't know about you, but especially in the winter, waking up at 5am and when it is pitch black is the last thing I want to do but if it turns my life around, it's worth a crack, right?

So what kind of activities can you do in that time? Well, there is the obvious one, exercise. At Crossfit we do Tabata which is easy to do at home. 20 seconds of work and then a 10 seconds rest for four minutes. I do two lots of that it really gets your blood running.

Another thing is meditation. Or you could do reading. Read for 30 minutes to 60 minutes. I'm sure that could help somehow.

I got this idea from Napoleon Hill, you spend 30 minutes visualising the kind of person you want to become.

Whatever you do, make sure that it is consistent and you keep doing it. It will take time but I'm sure that you will start seeing the results sooner rather than later.

Well, I'm going back to bed. Good night.

Thursday, 7 April 2016

Consistency, Clarity and Vision (CCV)

It was brought to my attention that this blog should have some kind of theme. Something that connects it all together because if I look at the topics so far they are a real mishmash of topics and there isn't a real coherent way of looking at it.

So, I have had a think about it and I have basically started on a journey towards a new me. That sounds very new agey doesn't it, however that is really the only way to describe it.

Anyway, the whole idea about this blog is to be consistent. To be able to keep it going for an extended period of time. To be able to wake up in the morning and to get something down on paper so to speak. I don't care if anybody reads this or not, it is just a case of doing things on a consistent basis and who knows what will happen at the end of it.

I just want to tell you something about my health. At the moment I am doing Crossfit and today I went and had a class. It is really interesting, because depending on what you have eaten or how much sleep you had really affects how well you do in the gym. For some reason today I was feeling very good probably because I have clarity in what I want to do and where I want to do it and so now I can pursue those goals and every decision I make is congruent with those goals and I can start to see progress.

I will keep you updated and who knows that might become the theme of this blog.

Consistency, Clarity and Vision, these are the main things in your life. Embrace them.

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Don't Stokes the fire.

The Cricket T20 World Cup finished in Kolkata on Sunday with the West Indies finishing with four 6's to win the game and take away the spoils. For you non-cricket fans out there a 6 is like a home run in baseball except that instead of scoring one run you score 6. Understand?

In the final over, Barbadian Carlos Brathwaite hit English bowler Ben Stokes for four 6's in a row to win the game. For a neutral like me that was superb entertainment and I think that I might be turning around to the joys of cricket's shortest format.

In New Zealand there was a little postscript yesterday with Ben Stokes' mother calling up a radio station and basically having a go at them for calling her son arrogant and other bad things. (Just a little background, Ben Stokes may be playing for England but he is originally from New Zealand and his parents live there.)

My take on it is that good on Mrs. Stokes for standing up for her son. I think for sure comment on his cricket ability, comment on the game but don't comment about his personality or things like that. It doesn't make you look very good and as she said they don't know him so why should they blurt out the things that they said?

Ben Stokes is a brilliant cricket player and as a supporter of New Zealand cricket he would make a great addition to the middle order of the New Zealand cricket team but he has chosen to play for England and good luck to him.

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Crossfit is what I make of it not what you decide

I have just come back from my Crossfit class. I know that most of you out there have heard of Crossfit and you may have a good impression of it or you may have a bad impression. I know that there are some haters out there and that is there prerogative but I would just like to say that it works for me. I might not be your cup of tea but it works for me.

I must admit that even after doing it for two and a half years that I still can't do half of the movements but does that make me a loser. I don't think so. I go along and have a good time, I sweat out the previous night's excess and I get fitter. Just like any gym I suspect.

Some people out there might say that bodybuilding is better or some kinds of aerobics are better but it works for me and I don't mind paying the higher than average cost because it works for me.

I suppose what I am trying to say here is that you shouldn't worry what other people are saying and just do what is comfortable for you and do what you want to do.

I have a major thing in my life coming up in just over a week. Some people are saying that i shouldn't  do it and other people are saying that it is a waste of time and maybe money but I want to do it. I want to see whether I can be successful at it because it is my challenge, not anyone else's and that is exactly what Crossfit is. It is my challenge not anyone else's and if I get joy out of it then great.

Wish me luck for my little event coming up. I'm not confident of a good result but I believe that it is the start of something magnificent. Just like Crossfit. the start of a magnificent lifestyle.

Monday, 4 April 2016

"I'll be coming back"

I just listened to an interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger that was conducted by Tim Ferriss. It was very interesting for me and here are a few of the take homes I got from it. By the way, I really like that expression, take homes. To me, a Kiwi, it seems to be a really cool American expression. Actually as I am sitting here I can't think of the New Zealand equivalent. The learnings? No, that doesn't sound right.

Lets get back to the topic. Arnold's interview.

The first thing I got out of it was that you have to have vision. You have got to know where you are going and WHY you want to get there. Arnold also says that it makes it easier to do the stuff you need to do if you have that why. I suppose that is easier said than done but if you really have that goal  or burning desire or something then what you are doing will really be easier and it won't be a drag.

Another thing that Arnold mentioned was the power of meditation. I have tried to start it in the past but have never done it for a lengthy period of time. This may be my chance to see what I can get out of it. I'm sure even less than 10 minutes a day would be beneficial.

Excuse me as I go away and meditate and think about my Y's.

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Hanami

I first arrived in Japan on the 31st of March 1992. I remember it fondly because it was a beautiful day, not a cloud in the sky. It was also and I didn't know at the time that it was Hanami season. Hanami for people who may not be familiar with the Japanese language is loosely translated as flower viewing but it is when the cherry blossoms bloom and people go crazy under the trees.

I'm sitting on the 37th floor now and I can see some patches of pink and it looks good.

What the cherry blossoms mean for me and I think for most people is a new start. The winter has gone. Warmer weather is on its way and you can think about new things and that is exactly what it is for me too.

I got a real kick in the guts about a month ago and it has affected me ever since. I just used the 1st of April as a time where I drew a line in the sand and thought no more.

I will get what I want come hell or high water.

So Hanami 2016 represents that for me. It is now my chance to to make the most of it. I hope I don't let myself down.