Three Surprising Life Lessons From Successful People

People often envision successful people enjoying the good things in life such as happiness, wealth, and power. Likewise, we tend to associate success with admirable traits such as wisdom, hard work, and discipline. Thus, we look at successful individuals and wonder about their secrets. We want to emulate their virtues and know their tactics so we can also savor the sweet taste of success one day. One way to make famous and successful personalities your mentor is by learning about their views on life. However, as undoubtedly interesting individuals, you may even be surprised by the life lessons they give. Here are three surprising lessons from highly successful people you may want to know:

Learn to say no.

You might think that successful people never want to miss anything and so always feel the need to say yes to everything. However,  a quote from one of the most successful American investors, Warren Buffett say otherwise. As the quote from Buffett says, “The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.” This quote stresses the need to protect your limited and valuable time. As much as you want to, it will be hard if not impossible to accommodate every request and give in to every demand. Thus, learn to prioritize tasks as you manage your time. Not everything deserves a slot on your calendar and it is alright. In fact, trying to please everybody can even prevent you from reaching your goals.

Failure is a good thing.

With her bestselling novels, world-famous J.K Rowling is surely a picture of success. However, one advice from this British writer teaches the importance of failure. As Rowling said, “Failure is so important. We speak about success all the time. It is the ability to resist failure or use failure that often leads to greater success.” The quote is not encouraging people to fail. Rather, it emphasizes the need to see failure as doors that show wonderful lessons and can lead to great opportunities.  Her words teaches us to never lose hope even after experiencing failure. Another successful personality, Oprah Winfrey, backed this refreshing view about failure with the quote, “Failure is another stepping stone to greatness.”

Aim for simplicity.

You might think that a brilliant man like Microsoft founder, Bill Gates thinks in a complex manner. However, in a speech he gave during the 2007 commencement exercise in Harvard University, some of his advice is to keep things simple.  According to the billionaire, “The barrier to change is not too little caring; it is too much complexity.” His speech implies that the key to solving complicated problems is by thinking of simple solutions. 

Almost everybody longs for success and many desire for a faster and easier route to get there. However. there is no exact formula nor a predefined path for success. Yet it will surely involved the willingness and enthusiasm to learn. So take that first step towards success by being open to surprising and novel ideas that can help you reach your dreams.

Ryder and Nicole EricksonThree Surprising Life Lessons From Successful People
Read More

Start The Year Right With A 30-Day Challenge!

The New Year calls for big celebrations because it represents a chance to start anew. It is certainly a precious gift that you do not want to waste. The change of calendar year is also a gentle reminder that we all need to move forward in life. It is therefore great advice to start the year with enthusiasm and positivity! You want the year to see a better version of yourself. You want to grow and improve as much as you can!

To do this, you may have to let go of bad habits and replace them with new ones. It is probably the right time to start something that you have always wanted to do like lose weight, learn a new language or write a novel. Setting goals is a good way to ensure a fruitful year ahead. But do  you have the will to stick to your goals until they are finally accomplished? One thing you can do to try to make goal setting easier is a 30-day challenge.

Will a 30-day challenge work?

This method is simple and self-explanatory. If you want to change or start something, you just resolve to do it continuously for 30 days. For example, if you want to be healthier you may commit to a goal of engaging in physical exercise such as biking or jogging for 30 days. If you want to acquire new knowledge, you allot time to learn that skill for 30 days.

People who advocate this strategy believe in the notion that when you do something repeatedly for 30f days the action becomes a habit. A book written by Maxwell Maltz, a cosmetic surgeon, suggests that it takes about 21 days to form a habit. Some claim it takes 28 days while a 2009 study says it takes 66 days. On the other hand, a book written by motivational speaker, Jack Canfield says that it takes 30 days to break a habit and replace it with new ones. The number of days required for habit formation may differ, but the main thing here is consistency. You cannot abandon or give up on your goals for 30 days. Therefore, the success of a 30-day challenge lies in you. Do you have the determination not to break your resolve until you are on your 30th day?

Reminders when taking a 30-day challenge:

Set attainable goals.

Do not set too many big goals at once because it may just  increase your chances of failing. To minimize failure, make sure that you can confidently finish the challenge you give yourself. The beauty of a 30-day challenge is that it can break down huge tasks into easy, manageable ones. For example, limiting food intake can be difficult for some. To make it easier, you can choose to just cut back on sweets for the first 30 days. Then you can limit fatty foods the next month. This way, you are gradually but steadily treading the road to fitness.

Pick a schedule or set reminders.

The day can get so hectic that it becomes easy to dismiss a goal. To ensure you make time for it, go ahead and jot it on your schedule. If you have a book-writing challenge for example, you can pick the most convenient time of the day to work on your goals. You can conveniently set reminders on many calendar apps nowadays to make sure you will not forget about it. On the other hand, if you want to achieve your ideal weight, visual reminders of your goals will help you stick to it.

Aim for long-term.  

If you were able to eat healthier for 30 days, it does not mean that you should go back to your old ways the next month. You can treat yourself to a hearty meal upon completing a challenge as a reward but you should be able to do it in moderation now. Reverting back to unhealthy eating means the challenge did not accomplish anything at all. The ultimate goal of the 30-day challenge is to instill good habits. You should be able to have the discipline and determination to maintain the good habit you’ve acquired.

You have 12 months in a year so how about setting twelve 30-day challenges for yourself? You can succeed in some or fail in others but you will never know unless you try. When you come to think of it, you have nothing to lose in a 30-day challenge because you are only aiming for the best version of yourself. As the cliche goes, “The journey of a thousand miles begin with a single step.” So if you want  to start something, dare to take that first step today!

Ryder and Nicole EricksonStart The Year Right With A 30-Day Challenge!
Read More

How To Gain Respect & Admiration As A Leader: Avoid These Mistakes!

In an ideal world, leaders lead with confidence and people follow with ease. The said scenario is not always the case in real life though. Due to the various roles that a leader has to fill, the head of an organization can turn from the most loved to the most hated person overnight.

If you feel that your team is suffering from incompetent leadership, you may be guilty of committing the following mistakes:

Lack of Effective Communication

Poor communication can cause many conflicts so an effective leader should clearly communicate his or her expectations for each member of the team. Define specific goals to steer your people towards the right direction. By making sure that everyone is aware of the team goals and expectations, you ensure that no one feels lost or neglected.

Not Practicing What You Demand

One of the first things you will probably do as a leader is to lay out your demands. Among others, you may state that you want your people to be punctual, committed, or hardworking. Be clear about your expectations but also be ready to be the first to practice it. As a leader, you are expected to be a role model and a positive influence on everyone. By leading through good example you can provide proper guidance and earn respect in the process.

Not Trusting & Empowering Your People

Leaders are chosen because of their superior abilities but it does not mean that you are the only one who can do the job well. One of your most important roles as a leader is to generously share your knowledge and expertise to others. So based on their abilities, trust your staff to handle important tasks and guide them along the way. Encourage them to learn new things and hone their skills. This practice will empower your people and motivate exemplary performance. Keep in mind that your ultimate goal is to train your staff to be future leaders as well.

Not Being Consistent & Fair

Leaders have the privilege to set rules and implement sanctions but consistency is the key to establishing a regulatory system that works. Once you set a rule, make sure that no one is exempted from it. Everyone who fails to follow a rule awaits the same sanctions as well. Failure to practice fairness in your leadership style will breed contempt, distrust, and jealousy. It will ultimately destroy the team.

Not Showing Vulnerability

Leadership requires more than expertise in a certain field. The need to display strength of character is likewise equally important. So teach humility by owning up to your mistakes or show flexibility by designing strategies for overcoming failures. Allow your staff to see your weak side but at the same time show how you rise above difficulties

Leadership is a coveted status for many because it comes with many benefits and privileges. However, every awesome perk you get from leading a group has an accompanying responsibility as well. Unfortunately, the opinions of the people under your wing are important factors that can make or break your leadership. So work hard to gain the respect, trust, and admiration of your team. It is a huge challenge but surely not impossible with the pointers above.

Ryder and Nicole EricksonHow To Gain Respect & Admiration As A Leader: Avoid These Mistakes!
Read More

Debunking the Rumors on Mentoring

Mentoring is one of the most proactive ways to make successful strides in both your career and your life because it provides professionals with the chance to ask questions that would perhaps otherwise remain unasked and learn from one another in a supportive and respectful environment. But there are some common misunderstandings when it comes to the decision to get involved in mentorship programs. One of the common rumors on mentoring that seeking help or asking for advice is often confused as a sign of weakness, deters many from pursuing such a relationship. It may even feel like by participating in certain mentorship programs you are admitting to a feeling of confusion or the loss of vision pertaining to certain goals and dreams you have previously established for yourself.

But it’s time to debunk these rumors on mentoring because the most successful people are the ones who are never afraid to ask for help or seek advice. In fact, the most successful people are the ones who take the opportunity to learn from others whenever possible.

Read on to debunk the common misunderstandings and discover the truths associated with the power of mentorship programs.

Mentorship is a sign of weakness

First and foremost, participating in a mentorship program is actually quite the contrary. More than anything else, mentoring exemplifies an unparalleled level of ambition and dedication to career goals and aspirations. At its very heart, mentoring is an opportunity to improve all aspects of your career, and should be acknowledged as a sign of responsibility, professionalism, and strength.

Mentorship is a formal relationship

While a mentoring relationship may be a formal one, it can truly be whatever kind of relationship you want it to be. And look for these relationships everywhere. Someone doesn’t have to carry the formal title as your mentor in order for you to learn from them. In fact, try looking for mentoring moments in the most informal of situations. You’ll be surprised what you can learn even when you least expect it. And then the next time you find yourself in a formal mentorship setting, you’ll have new insights to bring to the table. To find out more about what makes for an optimal mentoring relationship, read these 3 Ways to Improve Your Mentoring Relationship.

Mentorship is for young professionals only

Mentorship is perfectly suited for professionals of all ages and at every career stage. And despite popular belief, older professionals can and should take every opportunity to learn from younger professionals as well. Every career-minded person, should learn from whoever and whenever they have the chance because new perspectives and fresh ideas can lead to career-changing breakthroughs. Most importantly, mentorship is a career-long journey because true learning is a lifelong process.   

Ryder and Nicole EricksonDebunking the Rumors on Mentoring
Read More

3 Ways to Improve Your Mentoring Relationship

A mentoring relationship is a two-way street. It can’t be driven solely by the mentor, nor can it be totally steered by the mentee. The two must work in tandem to reach their mutual destination of personal success. If you’re looking to be a mentor, or if you’re already currently mentoring someone, you should consistently be looking for ways to improve your mentoring relationship.

Here, we have three incredible ways to improve your mentorship relationship, no matter where you are in your journey.

Eliminate “Always” and “Never” From Your Vocabulary

In any relationship, the words “always” and “never” are pretty powerful. They can be whipped around to sting and burn, or they can be used to uplift and celebrate. That dual-edged nature of the words is what makes them so dangerous, so volatile, and so limiting.

If you tell your mentor that they “always” behave in a certain way, you’ll guarantee that they’ll not only continue in that fashion, but they may also resent you for that implication. Even if you meant it positively, you may engender a resting-on-their-laurels mentality. They may think that they don’t have to try as hard because you’ll just assume that they always perform at a certain caliber; there’s no reason for them to strive for more. The same logic applies to “never.” Never limits a mentee’s ability to overcome adversity.

Help your mentees to triumph over challenges and learn more about themselves always by never constricting them to “never” or “always.”

Build Trust with Your Mentee One Day at a Time

Trust is not implicit. It’s not a given: it’s something that has to be built and earned one day at a time. In a mentorship situation, it’s especially important to develop that trust over a longer period. You can’t rush out of the gate, assuming that your mentee trusts that you have their best interests at heart.

The best way to build that trust? It may seem way too commonsensical, but the truth is: the best way to build trust is to be trustworthy. Say what you mean and mean what you say. When you follow through on your promises, one after the other, you naturally build a positive rapport. You don’t have to make big promises, but you do have to prove yourself in some way. Start small, and work your way up, and before you know it, you’ll have an amazing mentoring relationship with someone you consider to be a close confidante as well.

Cultivate a Positive Attitude as a Mentor

Though mentoring is a two-way street, the mentor definitely takes the wheel for the first part of the journey. It’s up to the mentor to establish the atmosphere and initial direction of the mentoring relationship.

The best mentoring relationships are the ones whose foundations are positive. Thus, it’s vitally important to cultivate a positive attitude as a mentor. You’ll find that adopting a sunny disposition when dealing with a mentee will have a domino effect. Your positive attitude will catch on with your mentee, who will in turn pay that positivity forward, and that initial spark will light a fire that will spread the whole world around.

Ryder and Nicole Erickson3 Ways to Improve Your Mentoring Relationship
Read More