Category Archives: Motivation/Inspiration

Making Money Is Not Evil

Back in November I tackled the subject of making money in a post titled Are Your Views On Money Holding You Back. I pretty much made it clear that I tend to believe most people hold themselves back because they see rich people, or at least people they view as doing very well, as untrustworthy, and even though they want money themselves they don’t want to be seen in the same light by others.


by 401K via Flickr

Lately there’s been a lot of bashing against people who write these “make money” blogs. Yes, a lot of it is warranted, but not because they’re writing about making money.

The bashing comes because most of the people writing about it aren’t making any money at all. Some of those people might be making some money, but they’re not making a sustainable living wage. If you’re making $20 a month by blogging, you’re certainly not an authority on it. If you’re even making $1,000 a month, that’s actually pretty good but it doesn’t make you an authority on it.

Some years back, one of the topics I used to write about all the time were the affiliate marketing programs I was testing; I tested a lot. With each program I tested, I wrote about it, what I saw, and if I’d made any money off it and how much. Late last summer I started a series on all the programs I’ve tried and talked about the kind of money, or lack thereof, that I made. You can see an example of my talking about these affiliate programs here. In my mind it was the most honest way to talk about these things. I mentioned Commission Junction in that post, saying I love how many things they have and how it offers lots of options for advertising, yet also admitting that I’ve not made a lot of money in, what is now, 4 years.

Making money is NOT evil; how you make it might be. Those that pursue income by lying or being sneaky are evil. Well, that might be a bit strong but go with me here. When I was first learning about selling items online I purchased a book from a site called Rich Jerk. The book was actually pretty good, and its follow up, which was a series of extra chapters, weren’t bad at all either. They have an interesting schtick that I didn’t mind of being rude to customers; I thought it was pretty funny.

Then one day they sent a special link to show us how we could make some easy money online. It took us to a video where this guy showed us a way to make money using Craigslist. What he did was find an image of a cute dog on Google, and used it in an ad on a squeeze page. Then he posted something on Craigslist about the need to give his dog away to someone because he was moving and couldn’t take his dog with him. Within hours he’d had around 25 people send him email asking about the dog. What he did was reply to every person, telling them he’d found someone for his dog, and then talked about the training he did on his dog and sent them a link to his sales site. And he actually ended up making 7 sales from it, since his squeeze page was for a dog training manual.

Some call that effective marketing; I call it smarmy. It’s that kind of thing that keeps the hairs on the back of my neck raised high, wondering if certain things are scams or not. And that’s a horrible way to go around the internet thinking, but it’s also the safest way.

Please, go out and make money. I want everyone to live the life they want to live, which I hope is a happy life. Just do it honestly; trust me, if you don’t, you will eventually get called out on it, and then where will you be?
 

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How Well Do We Know Ourselves?

Here’s how the conversation went:

@JustKissie When people tell you you’ve changed, it’s only because you stopped acting the way they want you to act. #BidTheeFarewell

@Mitch_M Or the way they got used to you acting; just sayin’… 🙂

@JustKissie Either way. They could be who they really are … but we never know the entirety of anyone … so how can we say they changed?

@Mitch_M I think if we know people well enough we know when it’s either them or us; have to really know people though.

@JustKissie Do I smell a blog post coming? Do we even know ourselves?

@Mitch_M Possibly; you writing it? 🙂

@JustKissie WE will write it. You know I write quarterly … if that.

Since I knew the “we” was me, I guess I’m writing it, and it’s this post. To start with, how many of you remember a post I wrote last year titled What Makes People Change? If you didn’t read it, you might want to check it out before going further with this one for some back story.

Anyway, Friday I went to visit my mother for Easter. Yeah, I know Easter was on Sunday, but we knew the crowds would be murder on Sunday so we always do our get together on the Friday before whenever possible.

While there, she’d called and asked the lady who lives across the street from her to come over because Mom had bought a gift for her little girl. So they came over, Mom gave her the gift, and the little girl loved the gift.

We sat and started talking about property values in the area and how they’d dropped since representatives had started trying to sell the house of the man who’d killed his wife, which was right next door to this woman. As we kept talking, we weaved through a history that each of us had with this man and it seems that my mother and I, for the most part, had a very different history and knowledge of this man than Mom’s neighbor did. The only thing I knew that was confirmed by this neighbor is that this man was doing cocaine; that was the easy part.

It seems this man actually had a very violent history, all while living across the street from Mom. He’d actually physically hurt all 4 of his wives (I only knew of 2, Mom knew of 3) and that one of his wives actually had to do one of those midnight special moves when he was out of town to get her and her daughter away from him and go into hiding; shocking stuff.

While it was shocking to see just how little my mother and I knew about some of the demons of this man, the conversation above with Miss Kissie made me start to think about just how little most of us know about ourselves, or are willing to accept about ourselves. Would we become different people if we were suddenly rich or poor? Would our behavior change drastically if suddenly we were famous or powerful? What about our behavior would change if one of our friends suddenly had some of these things and we weren’t as much a part of their lives anymore? Would we be jealous; would we be happy?

I guess overall I’m kind of lucky because I’ve spent a lot of time being introspective. I have no jealousy or envy of others, no matter what they do. I might want to emulate success, but I don’t begrudge anyone their good fortune, whether I believe they deserve it or not.

I almost never think anyone owes me anything unless I’m accused of not doing enough when I feel I’ve done all I’ve needed to do. If people never acknowledge that I’ve done something good for them, I’m okay with it, although it would be nice.

Could I kill? Well now, that’s the interesting question to respond to isn’t it? I have to answer it this way; I probably could depending on the circumstances. If I had to kill to save my life or the lives of those I love, yes. For any other reason I believe I can say no, but that’s after I learned to control some aspects of my younger behavior that I wasn’t overly proud of. Hopefully there are negative aspects of our childhood that we change as we get older. If those are the attributes that people look at and say we’ve changed, I think most of us would be happy with it.

One final thing, addressing my friend Kissie’s question as to whether we can say people have changed if we don’t know their entirety. My response would be of course we can. I knew a musician friend of mine had changed many years ago when he started doing cocaine, even though I only saw him every few weeks. I didn’t need to know his entirety to notice that.

I’ve known people I’ve worked with who were timid and quiet that, over time, became a lot more vocal and stood up for themselves. I don’t need to know their entirety, to know if that’s how they were in their real life to know they’ve changed at work.

It takes perception to notice changes in others. It takes bravery to notice changes in yourself. My longest friends will probably tell you that I’m the same as I was in my late teens. In some ways yes, but in some ways I’m not even close. I sometimes think we’re harder on ourselves than others are on us. Sometimes that’s not such a bad thing if it propels us to try for great things.
 

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46 Ways To Reach Your Own Super Bowl

Can there be anyone on the planet that doesn’t know what the Super Bowl is? Whether you watch it or not, more than a billion people will be watching this bad boy today in at least 65 countries around the world. It’s a monster whether you have a favored horse in the race or not.

This year pits two teams together that got to this game in different ways. One team, the New England Patriots, were expected to be here. They’ve shown a consistent pattern of success over the years by following the same formula, even when they change players. The other team, the New York Giants, got here through sheer determination, as they were literally at the point where if they lost one more game their season was done, and they’ve run off an impressive string of unexpected wins.

What this proves is that there’s no one way to attain success, yet there are things that everyone should think about in some fashion so that they can achieve success in their lives. Yes, this is one of those motivational posts of mine and to coincide with Super Bowl XLVI, or 46, I’ve come up with 46 ways that we all can reach our own pinnacle of success, our own Super Bowl. And think of it this way; whether you win it or not, do you think that if you finished close to your ultimate dreams that you won’t have succeeded in life? As a friend of mine once pointed out, success sometimes happens by only a nose; second place pays very well.

These are in no particular order except the first and last one; enjoy the day!

  1. Believe in yourself
  2. Believe in a purpose
  3. Have a dream to pursue
  4. Dream big
  5. Share your dream with your best friends
  6. If they don’t like your dream, find new friends that will
  7. Learn everything you can about your dream
  8. Never be afraid to take chances on things you want
  9. Research to make more informed decisions
  10. Think positively about things you want to do
  11. Don’t be reckless but don’t fear change
  12. Find mentors you can follow, whether they know it or not
  13. Find like minded people who also have a vision, whether it’s the same as yours or not
  14. Motivation is always a good thing to have
  15. It’s never a bad thing to have to get motivated again; we have to eat and bathe often as well
  16. There will be setbacks; realize it, and let them roll off your back
  17. Nobody is perfect; learn from your mistakes
  18. If you follow what someone else did word for word it might not always work for you, so only use it as a guide
  19. Make plans to attain your ultimate dreams
  20. Set goals both reachable and unattainable so you can show successes while always striving for more
  21. Don’t do things you know aren’t right for you even if everyone else is doing it
  22. If you need help, ask for it
  23. Don’t lie to yourself; you won’t respect yourself for it in the morning
  24. If you need time to reflect on things, take it; just don’t go away too long
  25. Don’t do things because they’re popular; do them because they’re fun
  26. Don’t forget to take care of yourself while you’re reaching for the stars
  27. Work on reaching your goals and you’ll find that your success will attract others
  28. Don’t always look for the next big thing; it will distract you and could harm you
  29. Don’t trust or distrust others without reason; no one gets successful on their own
  30. Just because you have plans and goals doesn’t mean you can’t alter them on the fly
  31. Always take time to help someone along the way if they ask for it; you won’t believe the dividends it will pay later
  32. Hold yourself accountable for working towards your dreams
  33. If you need one, a vision board of things you want when you become successful might help
  34. Always have a priority list of what’s most important in your life
  35. Don’t limit what you want in life; doing that limits how hard you’ll work for it
  36. The biggest, strongest, smartest, richest or bravest aren’t always the ones who’ll succeed before you
  37. Loyalty, honesty and trustworthiness will bring you more joy and success than you can imagine
  38. Imagination is your friend; no one ever created something special without it
  39. Always think of the greater good while you’re reaching for your dreams
  40. Wealth is always attainable; make sure you have your internal infrastructure ready to handle it
  41. Take in the beauty around you; if you don’t think you have any, then go find some
  42. Love your family; success means nothing without someone to share it with
  43. Finish things; many people have great ideas that they never complete
  44. Open up to others but don’t ever tell them things they might use against you later on
  45. Support the dreams of others; give advice when you can if they’ll accept it
  46. Nobody is better than you; are you feeling that now?

 

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My “Watch-Less” Experiment

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while know that I like to experiment here and there. One of the reasons I experiment is because I have preconceived notions about things, including myself, that every once in a while I need to challenge. Another reason is that I know I’m not the only one who has the certain habits, or something like them, so taking them on and then talking about them might help someone else address issues they have.


Yes, this watch is for sale 🙂

As you can tell by the title, I decided to go without my watch for a while. Of course there is the history behind this, and a brief little story as well.

I learned how to tell time when I was three years old. I got my first watch on my fourth birthday while living in Japan, and it was unlike any watch anyone else had. Mine had a spaceship on it, which was really cool because the space age was very new at the time. Eventually I went from that watch to a couple of Timex watches, then a military watch that glowed in the dark if it got enough light during the day, and finally my first digital watch a year after I started college. Around 1982 I got my first programmable watch, which not only allowed me to set alarms, but allowed me to put phone numbers in it.

This is the same kind of watch I have now, and I’ve always loved my watches. I’ve always been kind of a stickler for time as well. Having a watch that I can program with all kind of alarms seems to work out well for someone like me.

Over the last couple of months however, I started thinking that maybe to watch wasn’t helping me do what I wanted to do. Oh sure, I could still time things, but I found myself resistant to trying to stay on schedule because of the watch. I would always look at it, it didn’t inspire me to want to do anything. I had taken to really only using it when I needed to time something; that’s not so cool.

I decided it was time for experiment. I wondered what would happen if I stopped wearing my watch after so many decades. Would I miss the weight? Would I start being late for things? Would I go crazy because I couldn’t look at my watch all that often anymore? Or would nothing happened at all?

I’m not going to make you wait for it this time around; nothing happened. I found that it was quite an easy transition going from wearing a watch all the time to not wearing one at all. One of the reasons is that I have so many replacements for a watch. My smart phone obviously has a clock function. Because I’m at my computer all the time it also has a time function. I don’t have a clock in my computer room, but I have a digital cable box that always has the time showing. When I’m in my car there’s a clock. Even at the gym there are two clocks, one at each end of the track.

Also, I knew that I could set alarms on both my smartphone and my Palm, and the smart phone also has a timer. In other words, overall I’ve found that I had so many other ways of checking my time that I didn’t miss my watch at all.

Of course there is a downfall. I find that I’ve been staying up later than normal, not thinking about going to bed until 3:30 in the morning, and a couple of times not until 5AM. No, that’s not a good thing, and I find that just because I go to bed later doesn’t mean I sleep any later, so I’m not sleeping as much as I was before. Still, as long as I’m working for myself that’s a small thing because I can always get a nap if I need one.

I know you’re thinking “why did he tell us all this”? All of us have preconceived notions about ourselves, as well as other people. When I wrote my post about modeling the other day, a couple of people said that there was no way they could see themselves ever being able to do the same thing. When I wrote my post some years ago talking about having to start injecting myself with insulin, a few people wrote that they could never see themselves being able to do that either.

People are always saying they can’t do this and they can’t do that, and even though every once in while their reasoning is sound, most of the time it’s people reacting with fear to something that they really don’t know whether they could do it or not. And most people, myself included, are afraid to tackle certain things that they feel are beyond their comfort zone.

I have used watches as a crutch for almost 50 years, and in my wildest dreams I never thought that I would be comfortable without having a watch on. Not that I will wear my watch again, but it’s nice to know how easy it was to break the bonds I had placed on my own mind, since that’s where most of our bonds lie. It makes me wonder what else there is that might be holding me back in some fashion that I can break to push forward.

Think about this; what types of things and how many things are in your mind that holding you back? Maybe make a list of 10 things that follows these two words: I can’t. Then pick one and resolve to at least test it; you might be surprised at what you’re capable of.
 

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Stuff We Forget To Do For Our Benefit

A couple of nights ago my wife asked me to help her move something. I went to help and realized it was something big and a little bit heavy. Not afraid of heavy things, I did my part in helping her move this thing. At some point, however, I smacked part of it into my foot and did that jumping around thing most of us do, trying to walk it off.


by Dave Matos via Flickr

My wife was now upset because not only had I hurt myself, but I wasn’t wearing shoes. Most of the time while in the house I don’t even think about it, wearing either socks or nothing. But I need to know better because, being diabetic, one is supposed to watch out for things that happen with feet, just in case. As it is I currently have a bruise on my big toe that’s been there for about 4 weeks now, not healing, and I just thought about calling the doctor’s office about it; two days and they haven’t called me back yet. The thing is that I have no idea when I hurt that foot, and I can only estimate how long I’ve had it because my wife noticed it first; actually, I’m not even really sure it’s a bruise.

I’m at an age now where there are simple things I just don’t think about beyond a couple of minutes. Putting on house shoes is one of those things; if I need to go to the kitchen and I don’t have shoes on while sitting at my desk, I don’t even think about it until I’m there. But dangers are everywhere; my wife sews and pins could be present in the carpet; I’ve stepped on them here and there but luckily to this point they’ve never been turned up. I also bump into a lot of things; how many of us don’t bump or kick something accidentally here and there, and some minutes later, for the most part, have forgotten we’ve done it?

I’m one of those people who’s a scheduler; turns out my mother is as well. I do that because I need reminders to do things, then to follow up on them. For instance, I always set timers to do laundry but always forget to set timers to put the laundry in the dryer, which means sometimes my laundry sits in the washer for a couple of days and I have to re-rinse everything. I have to schedule times to eat, otherwise I’ll go hours between eating, not good for my glucose levels. I schedule breaks, and sometimes I schedule projects and even email.

One thing I never have to schedule is my blogging. When I want to blog I just do it; luckily, depending on which blog I’m thinking about, I write enough to get by. Yet, what happens if one of these days I forget that? How will it impact some of the other things I believe are somewhat important in my life?

I mentioned eating; seems strange that one would forget to eat, doesn’t it? Especially someone like me, who’s not necessarily a small man. Even with my CPAP I’m tired a lot, and often I have to make the choice of whether to take a nap or eat. Most of the time I choose napping, feeling that I can always eat when I wake up.

According to a nutritionist that’s the wrong move. When we’re born the first instinct we know is how to eat; sleeping is something that we just do. Turns out that as we get older, we really do stop eating as often or as much, and food is what sustains us. Supposedly, by not eating something first, we sap our energy such that it makes it harder for us to wake up; that’s assuming we eat the right foods. When my grandmother’s mind stopped working properly she stopped eating; supposedly even when one’s mind doesn’t fully work, they can control eating or not eating, and without eating, she didn’t have a chance to survive. My nutritionist told me I don’t eat often enough; can you believe this? Well, I can after looking at myself more critically and realizing that often I only eat 2 meals a day, along with some snacking; nope, that just won’t do.

I lead in with all that stuff because I have a point; of course I have a point! lol When we don’t take care of the things we believe can help us in life or business we don’t survive, or rather all we’ll do is survive. People who create blogs with the intention of growing their business or selling their products and forget to blog are only hurting themselves. Folks who forget to send out invoices (yeah, I do that) or market themselves or use social media to help get the word out or, if necessary, spend a little bit of money to progress, only delay any benefits they might have coming their way.

What things are you forgetting to do that you might need to start scheduling for your life or business? What assistance are you searching for to help you progress? And what are you going to do about it?
 

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