Tuesday, January 23, 2007

20 Ways to Improve Your Life and Health

Perhaps one of the best things I have done is sat down almost everyday and thought out ways of improving my life, and improving my general thought structure. Sometimes I even like to write down my thoughts, and especially lately - maintaining a positive outlook has been an important factor in maintaining my sanity.

  1. Make sure you get something productive done every single day, even if it is just a small thing - the small things add up.
  2. Get some physical exercise at least three days a week. Exercise is something that, especially in various parts throughout the United States, is often neglected! Push your limits when you can, and also experiment with different physical exercise routines to see which ones work best for you. Persist in working to improve your body.
  3. Start a journal and record your daily thoughts. Try to write down as much of what you’re thinking everyday as possible, even if some of the details seem asinine, or insignificant.
  4. Take a look at your finances at find a way to improve upon them. Cut any expenses possible and devise a plan to earn more money.
  5. Get enough sleep. While a common rule of at least 8 hours per night holds true with many people, everyone is different. Some people function with 10 or 12 hours much better, and medical journals and magazines have been raving about sleeping in for years; sleep is not a bad thing. But do not oversleep, of course, and do not let sleep interfere with your daily functioning.
  6. Try something new as often as possible. Don’t give yourself a heart attack or anything, but try to step outside of your comfort zone whenever and where ever the situation permits. Try new things!
  7. Be optimistic! Positive thinking is directly linked to good physical and mental health. Those who are optimistic are generally thought to live longer than those who are cynical - so think positive!
  8. Find someone to love. Those who are married statistically live longer than those who have lived the majority of their life alone. A long term relationship not only adds depths to your emotional intelligence and existing personality, but it is shown that in terms of your biological, neurological, and physical development, having someone to love and be with for the majority of your life is beneficial to your health!
  9. Read a book a week or more! Reading is pushed on kids everywhere, and for good reason. Those who hold more education hold better jobs, better health, and live happier lives. Read as much as you can about as much as you can. If you have children, get them started early in reading and try to facilitate them getting into the habit of it. Don’t just read fiction - dive into the world of real, factual knowledge about a topic that fascinates you. Become an expert.
  10. Change and monitor your diet. Improving your health means watching what you eat. Look into how different foods and components of food affect your mind and body. Is the Atkin’s Diet safe? What about the medication you’re taking? Are vegetarians more healthy or less healthy because of their no-meat diet? Find out the facts and do your own research!
  11. Get a hobby if you do not already have one. A lot of people already have hobbies, and a lot of people don’t. If you do not have one, get one! Those who have hobbies are being more intellectually stimulated than those who do not have them, as they are keeping themselves active and occupied. Hobbies don’t just have to be things like scrap books or photography, they can be all kinds of things! Just as long as you enjoy it, it’s fun, and it keeps you moving - it is a good thing to have.
  12. Get off whatever drugs you can. Drugs are not just the illegal drugs you hear about like marijuana or cocaine, drugs are the everyday medications we’re taking, and even the medications we’re buying over the counter from the local store. Do research on whatever it is you often take, and if there is any way to avoid taking the medication that does not cause you to suffer any negative symptoms, then get off the medication when you can! The body is meant to heal itself, not have pills do it.
  13. Hold back on the TV, or quit television all together. Some people I know are personally terrified to quit watching TV - they think it will be the end of the world or something. My suggestion is that you try it and see what it might do for you. For 30 days, lay off television and see what happens as a result. Take all the time you spend watching TV and hit the town - go meet new people, get involved in other activities, or read. Your perspective, even within a very short period of time, may dramatically change as a result, and your brain will thank you.
  14. Limit the music you listen to when driving. If you drive a car, limit the amount of music you listen to from both radio stations or any kind of audio player. Turn it all off, and drive in silence during a time when you’re relaxed, and alert. Listen to the sounds of the road, experience the thoughts that will run through your mind, note how your emotional state can change.
  15. Get over your old romantic relationships. If you’re obsessing or stressing over a break up that happened a long time ago, forget the past! Think about the now, and look into the future. If you must absolutely think about the old relationship, take a moment to note the happy times you had and then let the rest go, and move on. Continuing to think about something you no longer have is either leading your actions toward a distorted direction or keeping you in a downed emotional state. Either way it isn’t very beneficial. Forget the old person and find a new person or even enjoy being single!
  16. Take the time to have fun. Having fun is important, and anyone who says otherwise is probably not a very happy person! Do you want happiness? Then make some time, everyday, to have at least a little bit of fun.
  17. Give up coffee and energy drinks. An occasional cup o’ java is okay in my book sometimes, but most of the time, I suggest you lay off the caffeine and other natural stimulants. The energy drinks can also be very unhealthy, so watch what you’re consuming in the mornings; it affects the entire rest of your day and long term future. Stick to taking a multivitamin, eating right, and getting enough exercise to maintain your energy level.
  18. Stay social. Continue to meet new people, and keep improving the relationships with the ones you’re already with! If that means going to church, volunteering with a community group, or even getting involved in a discussion with a complete stranger in the middle of a bookstore - just stay social, and try to be outgoing and friendly with everyone you meet and talk to.
  19. Follow the golden rule. Give out and you shall receive back. The more you give out, the more you’re saying to the environment around you, “I have enough,” and you’ll find the rest of the things in your life responding to that message in a positive way.
  20. Read DirtyMechanism.com. It might be a funny name, but this is a site I have dedicated to using my personal experiences to aid your growth and development. And don’t just read my site, stay involved in reading as much as you can with other self growth and personal development resources. Keep reading books from your local library, bookstores, and other websites.

Follow these 20 tips, and continue to branch out even more in your journey for self exploration and you just may land on your feet!

Source: http://www.dirtymechanism.com/index.php/20-ways-to-improve-your-life-and-health/

The 7 Top Ways Millionaires Become Wealthy

There are 7 common factors to those who build net fortunes of one million dollars or more. In America, there has never been more personal wealth than there is today; yet most American’s are not wealthy. Amazingly, a mere 3.5% of our households own almost one-half of the wealth in the United States! Although we may be hard working, educated, moderate to high-income earners, why are so few of us affluent?

In studying the affluent, I found a pattern that the wealthy follow. It is more often the result of planning, hard work, perseverance, and self-discipline that determines who become wealthy. The factors compiled here are summarized from the research done by Thomas Stanley Ph.D. on over 1100 actual millionaires (many are multi-millionaires) in the U.S. today.

1) Live Well Below Your Means

Don’t be fooled.The ‘average’ millionaire doesn’t look like a millionaire! The key word here is frugal, frugal, and frugal. The typical person is America is a consumptionist. It’s in our blood. We work hard, make money, and spend it well. Not the typical millionaire! They play great defense (saving and investing) as well as offense (making money). Just like in football – great offense is exciting…but great defense wins games. An interesting note: Millionaires on average claimed their spouses were as frugal or more than they were. It’s a family affair: Sacrifice high consumption today, for financial freedom tomorrow.

2) Spend Your Time, Energy, and Money in Ways that Build Wealth.

Although the road to Millionaire’s Ville takes a frugal path, they pay well for training and advice. Do investment planning. Go to seminars. Hire good attorneys, tax accountants, mentors and coaches. Learn to identify and invest in assets that produce income. The wealthy spend money when the investment will protect and grow their assets. Millionaires also know the details: How much is spent each month and on food, clothing, and shelter. The non-wealthy say they don’t have time to plan, while the wealthy make time to plan. But here’s the shocker: The average millionaire spends 8.5 hours per month planning, while the non-affluent spend 4.5 hours or less planning. How can 4 more hours per week impact your future? Make it happen and the odds are in your favor of joining the truly wealthy!

3) Choose Financial Independence over Displaying High Social Status

The wealthy run highly efficient operations both in business and at home. Most live in average neighborhoods, and drive average cars. They’re not interested in keeping up with the Jones’ – because the Jones’ aren’t financially free. It takes lots of energy to consume big mortgages, change homes every few years, buy the most recent model cars, and wear the latest fashions. The wealthy drive typically American made cars! Japanese cars come in 2nd place; half of these are Toyota Camrys. Yes, significant value per dollar is the key here. The Millionaire’s Motto: You aren’t what you drive. The status cars – Lexus, BMW’s, Mercedes? At 6.4% or less per each brand.

4) Don’t Accept Economic Support from Your Parents once Outside the Home

Sounds painful doesn’t it? It’s a fact that has taught the wealthy how to earn, keep, and invest money. Parents of the wealthy do not, or cannot, provide “economic outpatient care”. The results are clear: The more dollars the adult children receive, the fewer they accumulate. Those who are given less are motivated to accumulate more on their own merits. An amazing fact: 80% of millionaires are first generation millionaires; they have made their money on their own, in their lifetime. Many of these folks have been immigrants to the U.S., starting out with minimal cash on hand. Work hard to learn and generate wealth—it CAN be done, and happens in America every day.

5) Teach your children to be economically self-sufficient to foster a “Wealth Mind-Set”

Provide your children fish and they will eat for a day. Teach them to fish and they will eat for a lifetime. As you might guess, children who grew up to be affluent, who had affluent parents, were taught to be disciplined and intentional with their money. Robert Kyosaki, author of Rich Dad Poor Dad, didn’t cave in when his son asked for a car at 16 years old, even when the neighbor kids were being given cars by their parents. He gave his son $3000, and a subscription to the Wall Street Journal, and a few books on investing in the stock market. Now Rich Dad’s son watches more CNN than MTV. He has the motivation, and is getting an education that will provide him for a lifetime, well beyond his first car purchase.

6) Become Proficient in Targeting Market Opportunities

Find your niche, like the wealthy do. Follow where the money flows, and look for specialized opportunities. Why not target the wealthy themselves? Yes, they are frugal, especially first generation self-made wealthy. BUT…they spend openly on investing in themselves and their families. Investment advice and services, business training, software, tax advice, legal, medical, dental, health, real estate, and education are top priorities. They pay well for products and services that protect and grow their assets. Remember the majority of the wealthy are self-employed entrepreneurs. Followed by medical professionals and business executives.

7) Choose the Right Occupation

You now have a good idea of what the affluent do. 20% are retirees. Of the remaining 80%, most of these are self-made businessmen and women. Keep in mind that entrepreneurs are 4 times more likely to become millionaires than those who work for others. There is no one business, or group of business more likely to breed millionaire-hood. Some are lecturers, others medical professionals, farmers, small manufacturers, and corner mom and pop stores. The most important predictor is the characteristics of the owner, than the type of business. It’s the winning combination of skills and attitude that hit’s the wealth target.

NOTE: The affluent attribute being honest with all people as the most important characteristic in their businesses, tied with being well disciplined. The vast majority of the wealthy were not stellar students, or born into money. They have made it through following a few simple principles and being consistent.

Best of all, you can do these! For more information, participate in Steve's LIVE workshops from your home or office. Curious about how that's possible? See the link below.

Source: http://www.selfgrowth.com