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Avoiding Those Holidays Traps

November 18, 2017 by  
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Next week is Thanksgiving. Soon after that there’s Christmas and then New Years. It’s that dreaded holiday time when we are faced with many temptations that make it hard to stick to our goals, especially healthy diets. It doesn’t take much to regain that hard-won weight loss or bring your health down and it can be infinitely harder to get back to where you want to be.

So, for the next few weeks I thought I’d focus on healthy eating in this time of endless traps. Staying healthy is important for you to keep up your energy and motivation which you need to accomplish all the great things you have planned.

Although you don’t want to let a bit too much pumpkin pie spoil things for you, staying healthy during the holidays doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy yourself. In fact, you should go out there and celebrate with gusto. Just be discerning about what and how much you eat or drink. To do so, just follow a few simple rules:

  • Go ahead and enjoy a small cupcake or one sugar cookie during festivities but stop at that. It’s not the sweets that are the problem as much as eating too many of them.
  • Eat slowly and savor the occasional treat you do have. Eating slowly will delay having to fight the temptation to have seconds and, hopefully, when you are done with it, you will feel satisfied enough not to feel.
  • Keep healthy snacks close at hand. Grab some apple slices or crunchy veggies when you have the overwhelming temptation to gobble up a whole plate of cookies.
  • Don’t fall into the “I’ve already been bad so it won’t matter if I keep eating too much of the wrong stuff” mentality and overindulge. Likewise, don’t brush off unhealthy eating by telling yourself you’ll do better after the holidays. Let yourself have the occasional treat then get back to your healthy diet.
  • At parties, stay active to keep your metabolism up and your mind off the food. Dance, participate in all the games, wander the room, and mingle.
  • Keep away from the food tables at parties. Move conversations to foodless corners of the place.
  • Keep your eye on the big picture. Review your goals and what you want out of your life daily so it’s at the forefront of your mind when the cookies get passed around the office.

You can also read more about the importance of health and great things you can do to improve it in Chapter Ten of my book, How To Ignite Your Passion for Living.

I’ll be talking about more helpful ideas for this time of year so to ensure you get my posts, sign up on this page here. If you find these posts really helpful, you might share this blog with your friends and family who can also sign up on the page I linked.

A List of Positives Actions

November 4, 2017 by  
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I know I have been going on about lists the last few posts and I hope you are up for one more. I just find that lists really help me focus on the qualities I want to see in myself, helping me to move closer to achieving super success.

We all have great wants and desires. Without them we’d have virtually no motivation to do anything. But there are a lot of hidden land mines that lie in our path just waiting for us to step on them and explode our dreams, desires, and goals. We all know that frustrated desires can lead us to search out bad or negative ways to boost or otherwise change our mood—-by using drugs and/or alcohol, binge eating, or even going on a shopping spree. These all work well to increase dopamine and serotonin—those mood-altering chemicals in our brain—giving us a high and one that can be addictive.

The problem is these activities can too easily and too quickly become detrimental to our health, our finances, and our relationships. But what if you could increase these mood-altering chemicals with something positive and productive, gaining a natural high and moving towards your goals at the same time?

Listing positive activities can really help you do this. Here are mine. You can use these as a start or as examples for your own list. Then when you feel yourself turning towards those old negative and harmful options, chose something from your positive list instead. Do this diligently for at least a week and take note of how much better you feel about yourself and your life. I bet you’ll not only enjoy the activities you’ve used as positive substitutes for the old harmful ways, but you will be much happier.

Mark’s List of Positive Actions

  1. Work out: Just 6 or 12 minutes on the stair master, doing sit-ups and push-ups or using weights.
  2. Get a tennis game going.
  3. Write out my bests thoughts for the days.
  4. Read a good book.
  5. Listen to favorite music (create a custom playlist online).
  6. Arrange a get together with family and friends.
  7. Get a massage.
  8. Hike or bike in the mountains or just take a walk in the neighborhood.
  9. Take 5 to 10 minutes to meditation
  10. Do 5 to 10 minutes of simple yoga

Now … what goes on your list?

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Inspiring Words from the Past

October 28, 2017 by  
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I came across this from a blog I wrote 9 years ago and I really loved being reminded of these quotes from great people of the past. They always seem to inspire and motivate me to be a better person. I’ve also found that if I read each one out loud it makes a bigger impression on me. Try it for yourself!

  • The way to gain a good reputation, is to endeavor to be what you desire to appear. ~Socrates
  • The fact is, that to do anything in the world worth doing, we must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger, but jump in and scramble through as well as we can. ~Robert Cushing
  • The searching-out and thorough investigation of truth ought to be the primary study of man. ~Cicero
  • The only journey is the journey within. ~Rainer Maria Rilke
  • Know thyself means this, that you get acquainted with what you know, and what you can do. ~Menander
  • Yes, know thyself: in great concerns or small,
    Be this thy care, for this, my friend, is all.
    ~Juvenal
  • Collect as precious pearls the words of the wise and virtuous. ~Abdel-Kadar
  • If we do not plant knowledge when young, it will give us no shade when we are old. ~Lord Chesterfield
  • If you have an hour, will you not improve that hour, instead of idling it away? ~Lord Chesterfield
  • Follow your honest convictions, and stay strong. ~William Thackeray
  • He that will not reflect is a ruined man. ~Asian Proverb
  • Every day do something that will inch you closer to a better tomorrow. ~Doug Firebaugh

Now lastly there is this quote from a guy who is not quite as famous as Socrates or Cicero but I think it’s pretty good and it’s help me in so many ways.

“Set big goals for your life but remember it’s critical to write them down and put a deadline date on each goal because the human mind (your brain) will not let you stop acting on and moving toward the goal that you set for yourself”.  Mark O Haroldsen

P.S. If my blogs are at all helpful to you and you would like to share these ideas with your friends, kids, grandkids, etc., send them this link to get these posts by email: http://ignitemylifenow.com/email-subscribe/

 

Your Own Affirmation List

October 21, 2017 by  
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In last week’s post, I challenged you to come up with some affirmations and positive self-talk. What did you come up with?

Never forget that the human brain can be programmed and you can teach it just about anything you want to–repeat those affirmations to yourself over and over again and your brain will believe it. It can and will improve your life and move you toward any goal you have set for yourself. It’s just like what science has discovered about forcing a smile on your face to make you feel better—the brain doesn’t realize it’s a fake smile and so releases the same feel good chemicals, serotonin and dopamine, as if it were a genuine smile.

If you are still working on coming up with more affirmations and positive self-talk, here are a few of mine that I try to repeat each one ten times every day, many times when I’m taking a shower, bath or sitting in my hot tub.

  1. I am feeling more upbeat and positive.
  2. I am happy and healthy.
  3. I live in the great right now moment.
  4. I set big goals but am satisfied with baby steps.
  5. I forgive myself for mistakes I make.
  6. I love my wife, I love my life.
  7. I feel calm and collected even in stressful situations.
  8. I am making a difference in the world for the better.
  9. I love people and I listen to others.
  10. I am strong and worthy.
  11. I eat a healthy diet.
  12. I love to exercise.
  13. I appreciate other people.

By the way, before I play a tennis game I do some self-talk as well. For example, I repeat over and over in my head, “I have a very power forehand. I have a very accurate backhand. I am fast and flexible. I have a very accurate and fast serve.” It always seems to help my game. I am convinced this self-talk was a key to helping me win 4 gold medals in singles tennis at the Huntsman World Senior games.

So, go ahead and give it a try in whatever aspect of your life you’d like to improve. I am convinced that if you take time to make up your own list of daily self-talk comments that you will be so glad and satisfied that you did and it will improve your life and those around you.

Do you find this information inspiring? You can get these every week in your email so you don’t miss one, by going to the top of my website page here: http://ignitemylifenow.com Search through the recent posts and archives sections on the blog page to find more super helpful thoughts and ideas.

 

SELF-CHECK LIST REDUX, PART 2

September 23, 2017 by  
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As I mentioned in my last post, I have a self-check list that has really helped me make improvements in my life and motivates me to keep it up. The list has 20 items on it and I gave you the first 10 last week. Did you go through those for yourself? Did you find that they brought up all kinds of ideas and aspects of yourself and your life you hadn’t thought about too much before?

Well, in this post, I am giving you the additional ten questions on my list. These really get into the big picture of who you are and what you want.

To get the most out of this list right now, I would suggest that you actually write down your answers to each of these questions. If there are any answers that you aren’t happy with–things you discover that you would like to change or know you need to address–highlight them. Then spend some time either journaling or talking to friends and family about what you need to do. Then, not too long from now, you should be able to answer these questions with positive statements that show you know who you are and where you are going with your life.

Ready?

  1. Have I set goals big enough to energize my mind, body and soul to the point that these objectives are my core or dominant thoughts?
    12. Do I want to be my own boss?
    13. Do people like me and can I inspire others with my dreams and goals so they will follow me and help me achieve my objectives?
    14. Am I a generalist who can delegate to others or a specialist who must do everything myself?
    15. Do I have a great degree of intuitive ability or am I very gullible and can easily be deceived?
    16. Am I able to take major disappointment and bounce right back?
    17. Do I have the right paradigm or view of the world that will drive the right attitude in myself? (I must always remember that if I don’t like my life I must change my attitude and thinking.)
    18. Do I use the huge and great power of “choice”? (Mankind’s most powerful attribute)
    19. Do I ‘borrow’ the brains of others through personal contacts, books, cd’s, podcasts, texting, emails etc.?
    20. Can I, and do I, adapt and adjust my goals to economic, political, technological, and relationship changes?

If you find writing down these answers helpful, try writing them out to last week’s 10 items too and see what other areas you might want to work on.

Are you finding this list as helpful as I have? Sign up to get these posts by email by going to the top of the blog’s post page. If you are not reading this on the blog page, then go to http://ignitemylifenow.com/blog/ to sign up and also have a look through the recent posts and archives sections you’ll find on the right-hand side. There’s even a search button on the top to help you find the subjects you’re most interested in reading. I hope you find more super helpful things in my past posts as well.

 

Self-Check List Redux, Part 1

September 16, 2017 by  
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I was going through a bunch of my old blogs and in re-read this one below. I was very motivated by my list of questions aimed to make improvements in my life. There are 20 on the list in total. I will post 10 this week and 10 more in next week’s post.  I hope they help you as much as they helped me back then as well as now with my latest review!

My Own Self-Check List, Part 1

I was getting myself better organized the other day and came across a list of 20 questions that I used in the past to help me focus on qualities I wanted to see in myself in order to have my own “Super Success”. I wrote the list back in December 2003 but reading it over, I found it just as relevant now as I did back then, so I wanted to share it with you all. I believe these, or your own personal variation, can help just about anyone.

Here are the first 10 and next week I will post the second group of 10. Read the list and ask yourself these questions:

  1. Am I being pro-active?
    2. Do I believe in myself (How’s my self-esteem doing?)
    3. Am I being “time conscious? (Life is very short so I want to live every day to the fullest. Even if I live to be 80 years old, that’s only a little over 700,000 hours!)
    4. Do I spend time, planning, calculating, and running the numbers on various projects that I want to see succeed?
    5. Do I make decisions that need to be made? Am I decisive enough and realize that it’s better to make more decisions and be wrong than to not be decisive?
    6. Am I staying organized and do I keep working on being better at it?
    (I test myself by observing my desk, my files, and even the backseat of my car.)
    7. Do I do what I say I am going to do, both to myself and to others?
    (My word needs to be my bond—my reputation will follow. My honor is my greatest power)
    8. Do I have high ambitions and enough energy to follow through?
    (I remind myself often of how I can create extra energy–like having great ideas and dreams along with focus for extra energy.)
    9. How do I stick with a project?
    10. How is my discipline factor? (I must remember that if I want to rule the world or any part of my own world I must rule myself first.)

If you find this list helpful–please feel free to pass it on to others that may benefit from it. And I would love it if you would drop me an email at moh@reincome.com and tell me how you liked this blog.

–MOH, May 11, 2012 

Are you finding this list as helpful as I have? Well, don’t miss out on next week’s either. Sign up to get it by email at the top of the blog’s post page. If you are not reading this on the blog page, then go to my blog page to sign up and also have a look through the recent posts and archives sections you’ll find on the right-hand side. There’s even a search button on the top to help you find the subjects you’re most interested in reading. I hope you find more super helpful things in my past posts as well.

 

Reflecting on Gratitude

September 9, 2017 by  
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I received some great feedback on last week’s blog on the subject of “Attitude of Gratitude”. Some of my readers were particularly pleased and impressed with the great feeling they got when they went out of their way, as I suggested, to express their gratitude to several people in one day—to random friends, relatives and even strangers.

This morning as I was thinking about what I wanted to write about for this week’s blog and that ” Attitude of Gratitude ” kind of hit me in the face with the thought of a very simple thing that happened a few minutes before. It was just me, turning on the faucet to brush my teeth and, strangely, nothing came out.  It turned out that our water had been cut off by the city, without announcement, to work on some pipe problems. Oh, poor, picked-on me … there was no water so I couldn’t brush my teeth.  Then later, when I sat down to write this post, I couldn’t help but think how many things we take totally for granted, especially us Americans and others who live in highly developed and wealthy countries. That stopped me in my tracks and pushed my thinking to all the wonderful things in my life that I am, and should be, very grateful for. I began immediately to strengthen my resolve to improve my “Attitude of Gratitude”.

Then I found myself thinking about all those people affected by the devastation of hurricane Harvey. That was bad enough but now we are all concerned about what the effect of hurricane Irma, on its way to Florida, will have on the people and places in its path when it hits the US.  It has already devastated a number of Atlantic islands. That’s not good stuff, but these kinds of natural disasters can, and should, push our minds to be grateful for what we do have right now, who we are, what we can do, and what we can become in this great country and world of ours.

We all need to pause and think about our “Attitude of Gratitude” and, like I challenged my readers to do last week, go out of your way in the next few days to express your appreciation and gratitude to those around you. Then be sure to take time to observe and reflect on how expressing your gratitude made those people feel as well as how it made you feel. If you really want to have a great day do it five or ten times and feel that great feeling over and over!

 

 

Living the Rich Life … Well Below Your Means

August 12, 2017 by  
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In last week’s blog, I said that multi-millionaires are risk takers and, sure, sometimes those risks don’t work out but with enough time, determination, and a good game plan, taking risks do pay off.

Viewing multi-millionaires from a distance you might not realize that most of these people also have a “lack of attachment to spending”, especially on their way up the financial ladder. But even after arriving at the multi-million dollar status, they still tend to live below their means. This is because they still pay close attention to their spending; it’s a habit they formed when they were poor and working on climbing that money ladder.

This trait jumped out at me just a few days ago while planning a trip to Europe.  I got on line to buy two first class tickets to Paris and, on my first search, saw that prices ranged from $8,000 to $11,000 for each round-trip ticket. Even though I could easily afford those kind of prices, I just couldn’t stop there.  I spent another 20 or 30 minutes looking at different route’s, dates and airlines and those minutes paid off big time.  I found a $2500 ticket for a nonstop flight to London, knowing that we could catch a ride on the great Euro star train which only takes 2 hours and 15 minutes to get to Paris. The only minor problem was that we prefer to fly on Delta airlines since we get a lot of free miles and our million-mile status gives us all kinds of benefits and privileges.

I told my wife and she told me to wait a few minutes because she was checking a few different dates for Delta and sure enough within 5 or 10 minutes she found a round trip, first class flight on Delta into London for $2600 dollars—for another $100 it was well worth it to us and we quickly booked our 2 tickets.

Like I said, I could easily afford the higher price but I would much rather use the savings to buy more properties or even make more donations to my favorite charities.  Maybe if I were a multi billionaire I would just not bother shopping around and would pay the much higher price.  But then I look at someone like Warren Buffet and even with his $75 billion, he lives far below his means, still residing in a very modest house that he’s been in since 1958.  He very much has that great “lack of attachment to spending” trait and knows how to live below his means!  We all need to learn a lesson from him and yes, pass it on to your kids and friends and anyone who wants to make it big and stay there.

A little P.S. here … that Euro star train ride is fantastic! It’s smooth, quiet, and travels at 200 miles an hour, straight from downtown London to downtown Paris. I love that wonderful and very scenic ride! You should make your own plans to take Euro Star and visit Europe in the not so distant future.

A Bold Night

August 5, 2017 by  
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Recently I read a list of 10 traits one sees in millionaires and found the list to be very much in line with my own experience, especially points like “not afraid of taking risks” and being the types that just go out there and “do it” without worrying about the possibility of failing.  There is much I’d like to discuss with you about the things on this list but this week, I want to zero in on risk taking and how it can pay off in many parts of your life.

Last weekend my wife booked tickets to the great historic Egyptian Theatre located in Park City, Utah.  It’s a wonderful place that books many talented actors, dancers and singers.  We went to see one of the original singers from The Supremes, Mary Wilson.

Wow, what a great voice she still has all these years later. She gave an absolutely wonderful performance and ended the concert by asking if any women wanted to join her on her last song.  I’m not sure if she invited any men to join in but no men took to the stage.  I was really into her music and performance and felt so turned on. I really wanted to join her along with that bunch of pretty ladies on stage but she was ending the song and I was afraid to go up and maybe totally embarrass myself.  I thought about it for maybe 15 seconds and then said to myself, “I’ve done all this preaching about not worrying about failure or embarrassment so why sit here? Just get up and go do it!”

Well, even though I was very unsure of myself, doing something that I’ve never done before, I just jumped up and got onto the stage and began singing and dancing with all those women.  And what happened?  Well, I had a wonderful time and all the women seemed to love that I joined them. Mary Wilson made a special fuss over me, even pulling me into her side as the song came to an end and, WOW … did we ever get a great standing ovation! Not only that, I met all her backup singers and musicians back stage.

Later my wife and I had a nice chat with Mary about success and what it takes to make it big. And yes, overcoming fear of failure and just “doing it” is high on that list.  There was an additional bonus for my boldness and that was the number of people that came up to me afterward to give congratulations for my boldness, saying they wish they’d done the same thing.  And now we even have a few new friends in Park City.

A big plus was that the theatre sent pictures of me on stage with Mary! Now, this experience certainly won’t turn me into a great singer, but I had an incredible evening and I re-learned that great lesson of overcoming the fear of failure.  I certainly used that lesson as I built my financial fortune, overcoming fear and pushing forward even though I knew there were risks I was taking.

We all need to keep telling ourselves to take some risks and push ourselves to overcome fear of failure.  I would hope you too will keep working on this one and, please, pass this lesson on to your kids and grandkids and friends, especially those that you see needing a little help in this department.

Mary wilson

 

A Darling Little House

July 15, 2017 by  
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Many years ago, I wrote a book called The Courage to be Rich. This week, I re-read some of that book and, in particular, a chapter entitled “How Yuks Can Create Big Bucks”. It reminded me again that making money by acquiring beat up, old, dirt bag properties and adding your own sweat equity can make a person rich today in the exact same way it did 30 and 40 years ago. In fact, right now, with many properties selling for top dollar, it makes even more sense to lower your financial risk by investing in these kinds of properties. Here is an excerpt from that section of the book.

Changing a Tacky Dump into a Swiss Chalet

I really couldn’t believe what I saw. A few years ago, while driving down a street in Salt Lake City, I glanced over at a little white house, maybe a thousand square feet at the most, and I just about drove off the road. The formerly grungy house had been completely transformed. Instead of a tacky little house complete with cluttered yard, worn grass, and garbage cans by the porch, I saw a cute, Swiss chalet cottage. The change was so stunning that I pulled over to stop and stare.

At first glance, it seemed that someone had spent a ton of dough making the property shine. Upon closer inspection, I found that the changes made on the outside of the property were quite inexpensive. The dirty sides of the house had been covered up by a fresh coat of paint, and Swiss style shutters with decorative patterns had been placed on either side of the windows. The garbage cans had been moved from the front yard to the back. For extra frosting, a white picket fence had been put along the front of the yard. One other conspicuous difference was a FOR SALE sign prominently displayed.

I was totally amazed at the change, but even more amazed at my reaction to the changes! I had, for years, been in the business of buying properties that needed fixing up and, after some work, would resell or refinance them at substantial profits.

Prior to stopping at this house, I considered myself very smart and successful at what I did. But here is the huge shocking part of this experience. My first reaction was: “What a cute little house! It’s absolutely darling. I should buy it!”

Talk about dumb–really dumb. Here I am in the business of buying dirt bag properties, fixing them up and making big money selling them and this little house almost fooled me into buying it. But now as I think about it, that experience is teaching me a big lesson.

Almost everybody would rather buy a property that looks nice and new and pretty. That’s just normal in us human beings. That’s why people are making money by fixing and fancying up beat up houses and apartments. And now in today’s market where a lot of properties are at top prices, these types of properties are the safer investment. You can greatly increase your chance of making money by doing the simple fixes that stand out and grab people’s attention!

That darling Swiss looking house certainly did it for me and needs to be duplicated. Or should I say, “Hey, here is another way showing how you can make big bucks from yuks.”

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