The Other 8 Hours: How a Little Change in Your Habits Will Make a Big Difference

Do you ever feel like you can never find the time to pursue your dreams and live the life you want?

Would you like to eliminate all the people and activities that drain you, and replace them with positive and life-affirming ones?

Do you feel like your life is on “auto-pilot”, heading who knows where, and you’d desperately like to turn it around in a positive direction.

Would you like to live every day with purpose, knowing you’re making real progress on your goals and dreams?

If so, you need to read The Other 8 Hours: Maximize Your Free Time to Create New Wealth & Purpose, by Robert Pagliarini.

Here is an excerpt:

Your day doesn’t start when you crawl out of bed. Your day-and even your life-doesn’t really start until 5:00PM. What you’ve done with your time after 5:00PM last week, last month, and last year has determined where you are today. How you use the other 8 hours today, tomorrow, and next year will determine your future-they are your only hope to radically improve your life. [Read more…]

How to Find the Work You Love – Even in a Down Economy

In today’s economy, most people who are employed are glad to have ANY job – even if it is one they hate or feel unfulfilled in.  Because having ANY job is better than having NO job, right?

If this describes you, do you just resolve yourself to wait until the economy gets better before making a career switch?  Or is there something you can do now – TODAY – to find the work you love?

And if you’re unemployed right now, do you just take ANY job that comes your way, or can you really find your dream job in today’s environment?

Here are Four Things You Can Do TODAY to Help You Find the Work You Love in a Down Economy – whether you’re currently working or not:

1.  Build Your Personal Network – Today, with all the social networking websites like Facebook and MySpace, it is easier than ever to build your personal network.  That old roommate from college, whom you haven’t talked to in 15 years, just may know someone who has open positions that you’re looking for.

I’m not sure if it is still true today, but a few years ago, I read that only 12% of the jobs that are available are advertised.  The rest are promoted, and found, by word-of-mouth.  I know that’s been true in my own life.  Several of my previous jobs were not advertised.  In fact, some were created just for me.  I’ll tell you more about that another time.

So take the time to connect with old friends and acquaintances.  Let people know what kind of job you’re looking for.  Chances are, someone you know knows someone who is looking for you!  In fact, I just called a friend a few days ago to ask if they knew of anyone who could do some work for me.  They immediately had a person in mind, and I connected with them right away.

2.  Volunteer for a Cause or Organization You Care About – If you’re unemployed, or under-employed, a great way to build your network, use your skills (or learn new ones), live your passions, and find your dream job, is to volunteer for an organization or cause that you care about.

It could be your place of worship, a community or civic group, or another non-profit or non-governmental organization.  There’s always a chance that you might be hired by the organization you’re volunteering for.  That has happened to me on four occasions!

But even if that doesn’t happen for you, you’re now in a place where you’re doing what you love for a cause you care about.  You feel good about yourself and have a renewed sense of energy, making it easier for you to do the job that pays the bills, but you’re not so excited about.  And you’re meeting interesting people and building your network of connections.

3.  Take a Good Look at Yourself – Now is a great time for a little self-assessment.  What are your unique skills and abilities?  What are your personality traits?  What are your values, dreams, and passions?

Taking the time to know who you are and what you want out of life will help you in every aspect of your life – not just your career search.  Don’t make the mistake of just settling for the job you went to school for (if you don’t like it anymore), or the one you thought would pay the most money.  There is no lasting fulfillment in that.

Check out my Ten Pillars of Lifestyle Design for strategies to help you assess your current reality, identify your skills, abilities, and personality traits, and clarify your values, dreams and passions.

4.  Start that Business You’ve Always Wanted – If you’ve aspired to start your own business someday, either full or part-time, that someday is TODAY!  It has never been easier to start something small and grow it big…whether it be retail sales, consulting, Internet sales, services like cleaning or cooking, etc.  Lots of websites offer help in how to do this.  Even the government does, through the Small Business Administration.

Which one of these tips, to help you find the work you love, have you tried?  Or which one sounds like something you want to do? Why or why not?

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Pillar #10 – Review and Track Your Progress

Welcome back to Life Compass, where I’m sharing my Ten Pillars of Lifestyle Design.  Congratulations on making it to the end!  Here’s what we’ve covered so far in the first nine Pillars:

In this post, we’ll cover the final Pillar, Pillar #10 – Review and Track Your Progress.

A wise person once said, “What is expected must be inspected.”  The point here is that we need to set aside a regular time to inspect or check the progress of our targets or goals.

This is another area where many people fall short in achieving success.  They set out with the best of intentions when they make their goal, but if they don’t visualize their success on a regular basis (Pillar #9) and set aside a time to review and track their progress, they lose sight of the goal and it gets forgotten.

I recommend you set aside at least an hour every week to review and track your progress.  Maybe you choose a time at the beginning of the week or maybe toward the end.

Go over your Master Dream List and add any new ones that come to mind.  Then review your life purpose, values, and Plan of Action.  Are you on track with the goals and deadlines you set?  Have you set aside enough time in your week to accomplish the goals that have the highest priority?  Do you need to adjust your deadlines, or set aside extra time in order to complete them?  Have you achieved any goals that you can celebrate this week?

If you stick with it, the weekly review will become one of your best allies in achieving your dream life, because you’ll have a set time to review your progress, make adjustments, and celebrate successes!

That’s Pillar #10 – Review and Track Your Progress.  I hope these 10 Pillars of Lifestyle Design have been a help to you in designing the life of your dreams.  Now the achievement of those dreams is up to you!

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me!

Pillar #9 – Visualize Your Success

Welcome back to Life Compass, where I’m sharing my Ten Pillars of Lifestyle Design.  Congratulations on making it this far!  Here’s what we’ve covered in the first eight Pillars:

In this post, we’ll cover Pillar #9 – Visualize Your Success.

You already possess one of the most powerful tools that will help you succeed in achieving your dreams and goals.  Master it, and nothing will stand in your way.  Ignore its power, or use it wrongly as many people do, and it will surely keep you from achieving success.  What am I talking about?  Your mind!

One of the biggest reasons people achieve success is that they regularly visualize their success.  In other words, they make time every day to create a picture, or a movie, in their mind’s eye of the things they want to bring into reality – whatever it is they want to do, have, or achieve.

Professional athletes and highly successful people use this technique regularly.  One of the most famous examples is Jim Thorpe, known as one of the greatest athletes of all time.  He was a Native American, All-American, Olympic champion, star NFL running back and Major League Baseball player.

On his way to the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, Thorpe and his fellow Olympians sailed aboard the ocean liner Finland. As others trained on a cork track laid on a deck, Thorpe sat nearby in silence. A sportswriter named Francis Albertani asked him, “What are you doing, Jim? Thinking of your Uncle Sitting Bull?”  “No,” Thorpe said, “I’m practicing the broad jump. I’ve just jumped 23 feet eight inches. I think that can win it.”

Thorpe, who preferred visualization to actual workouts, did in fact win the broad jump event in the Olympic decathlon!  He also won three more of the 10 decathlon events en route to the gold medal. He also won four of five pentathlon events to earn a second gold.

How does visualization work?  When you visualize an outcome you want over and over again, you build “cells of recognition” in your memory bank.  This helps you become consciously and acutely aware of everything that can help you achieve the visualized outcome that you desire.

When you continuously focus on an idea or image in your mind, you program every cell in your body and mind to work toward achieving that idea or image.  Once you impress it into the subconscious part of you, it eventually becomes ‘fixed’ and you automatically attract and move towards that which you desire.

The reason athletes do this is because they want to condition their mind in such a way that the body automatically behaves the way they want it to without effort.  They become “unconsciously competent”.

The same is true for you!  If you visualize the success you want over and over again, your body will eventually automatically do whatever it must to make the image a physical reality.

Take the time to review the Goals you’ve set in your Plan of Action.  Write out a vivid, detailed description, or draw a picture, for each one.  Then review that description or picture in your mind at least three times a day.  I’d suggest morning, noon, and bedtime.

For example, if one of your Goals is to have a better relationship with your spouse and children at home, visualize yourself coming home at the end of the work day, and greeting each member of your family with love.  Visualize sitting around the dinner table having a great conversation about each person’s day.  Whatever it is that you want to see happen, see it happen first in your mind.  Make a picture, or movie, in your mind’s eye and review it over and over.  Eventually, it’ll become a reality.

That’s it for Pillar #9 – Visualize Your Success.  Next time we’ll cover Pillar #10 – Review and Track your Progress.

Life Change For the Right Reasons

If you’re new to Life Compass Blog, on Sundays I write on Spirituality, Faith and Ethics.  Click here to read why.

Are there right reasons…and wrong reasons…to engage in a Life Change process? I think so. I’ve encountered more than a few people who want more money for the sake of having more money. And want more free time just so they can travel more and be entertained more.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting more money, wanting to travel, or enjoying entertainment. But if those things are the focus of our efforts, if they’re the reason we want to re-organize our lives, I believe we’ll be disappointed pretty quickly.

Why? Because more stuff is never enough. And more things can’t bring happiness.

Solomon, one of the kings of ancient Israel, was known as the wisest man of his day…perhaps of all time.

He had it all….hundreds of women (I’d question his wisdom a bit, on this point), dozens of palaces, the finest clothes, food and toys a guy could ever want.

Later in his life, he wrote a book called Ecclesiastes, which contains a lot of wisdom he learned from all his life’s experiences – both good and bad.

In it, he tells us that he “denied himself no good thing”. He chased after, and achieved, every single thing he wanted.

But in the end, it was all “meaningless” (Ecclesiastes 2:11). None of his belongings could end his longing for more. I think it was because he had the wrong motivation.

When it was all said and done, he realized that God is the source of true happiness and joy, and that he needed to recognize and thank God as the giver all the good things we could ever want (Ecclesiastes 2:24-16).

So, my question for you today is this: What’s your motivation for living, and for wanting to achieve your dreams? Is it just to get more stuff, or is there a higher purpose?

Pillar #8 – Identify People or Tools that Can Help

Welcome back to Life Compass, where I’m sharing my Ten Pillars of Lifestyle Design.  Congratulations on making it this far!  Here’s what we’ve covered in the first seven Pillars:

In this post, we’ll cover Pillar #8 – Identify People or Tools that Can Help.

Take a good look at your Plan of Action.  Then make a list of all the people who might be able to help you achieve it.  It doesn’t matter whether you know them or not.  If there’s anyone at all whom you think can be of help to you, write their name down. If you don’t know them personally, then also write down who it is that you know who might know them, or who might help you get access to them.

Next, make a list of all the things you need to know or do in order to achieve your plan.  For example, if your life’s dream is to be a published author, and you currently don’t know anything about how to write or market a book, then perhaps you need to attend a writer’s workshop or retreat.  Or maybe you need to sign up for an agent.  Whatever it is that you think you may need to know or do, write it down.

Lastly, make a list of all the tools you might need.  Maybe you need a new computer in order to write your book.  Maybe you need to get your home or office organized so you’ve got a good space to do your writing.

Once you’ve made your lists, start working on them.  Prioritize them in the order you think is important.  Then get going!  Start contacting all the people who can help, make a plan to help you learn what you need to learn, and figure out how to get the tools you need to get started.  You’ll be amazed at how quickly things start to move when you identify the people or tools that can help!

That’s Lifestyle Design Pillar #8 – Identify People or Tools that Can Help.  Next, we’ll cover Pillar #9 – Visualize Your Success.