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The Surprising Thing Others Expect from You

ug_of_war.jpgBigg success is life on your own terms. When we talk with people about their biggest challenge in living their lives on their own terms, one of the most common responses involves work – life balance in one way, shape or form.

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The tug-of-war

For many of us, it’s a perpetual tug-of-war. We love our family. We thoroughly enjoy our time with friends. We relish time to ourselves.

But we also love the work we do. We take pride in our accomplishments. Rightly so.

But we’re only human. We can’t be two places at once.

The result? We’re not as happy as we should be. We’re not completely fulfilled.

It may cause feelings of guilt. Depending on where the knot is in the tug-of-war we’re playing – which side is getting more attention – we may feel guilty about not giving enough attention to the other side.

When we’re at work, there are times when we may feel guilty about not being home. When we’re home, we may feel guilty at times about not working. It seems like a no-win situation!

The sacrifice

Research shows in our effort to have it all we’re sacrificing something that’s very important to our well-being: sleep.

So we end up dragging at work. Or we’re spent before we get home. By the time we get there, have dinner and do some household chores, we only have enough energy to crash on the couch.

But we keep pushing. Day after day, we push to the point of exhaustion until, finally, something inside of us says, “Enough!”

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The surprising thing

Stewart Friedman is a Professor at Wharton and the author of a fantastic book on leadership. It’s called Total Leadership: Be a Better Leader, Have a Richer Life.

In his research, he has uncovered an answer to this work – life balance problem. It has to do with a surprising thing others expect from you. They expect … drum roll please …

Less!

Dr. Friedman’s research shows that other people expect a lot less of us than we think they do. In many cases, they’re not the ones putting the pressure on us. We’re putting undue pressure on ourselves!

You are the entrepreneur of a very important enterprise – your life. Just like any entrepreneur, communication with your key stakeholders is crucial.

  • Talk about expectations. Great entrepreneurs have these conversations with their employees. They talk about expectations with their investors. Follow that example – have a conversation about expectations with the key stakeholders in your life.
  • Discuss options. Ask for their help in discovering options so you meet their expectations.
  • Reach an agreement about respective participation in each other’s lives. Think of it as a service level agreement.

You’ll come away with a clear understanding of the expectations the most important people in your life have of you. Then you can focus on scheduling your days to meet those expectations. Or better yet, exceed them. After all, this is the community for bigg goal-getters!

Thanks so much for the gift of your time today.

We’ve heard over and over again that money can’t buy happiness. Please join us next time when we ask, “Can happiness buy money?”

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00445-072409.mp3

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A Crucial Part of Your Personal Brand

business_cardBigg success is life on your own terms. We’ve said that the reason for the redundancy – “your own” – in our definition of bigg success is to explicitly show that you are the entrepreneur of a very important enterprise – your life.

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If life on your own terms means building your own personal brand, there’s a very important principle to keep in mind:

You’re the entrepreneur, the CEO, and the brand manager!

With their careers, some people fall short in reaching their potential because they just sell a service. They exchange their time and knowledge for money.

As bigg goal-getters, we don’t want to just sell a service. We want to create our own brands.

But we don’t want to just create a personal brand, we want to build our lives on our own terms.

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One crucial key to building our personal brands is consistency. There are at least three areas where this holds true:

Promotion

One of the things the biggest brands do very well is convey a consistent brand image. Yet that’s one of the mistakes that we make most frequently in building our personal brands: we’re inconsistent in showing ourselves to the world.

You want to convey a consistent message across all the media you use – your resume, your cover letters, your e-mails, notes you send, social media you might use, clubs you join, and on and on. With these materials, you create the image of who you are.

You also want to keep in mind who you’re trying to relate to in order to create the best promotional materials for your brand. Promotion sets the expectations. What can I expect from you? That’s your brand promise.

Performance

You want to meet, or better yet exceed, the expectations you set. Believe it or not, it’s better to deliver at a consistently lower level than to perform poorly at times and superbly at others.

Kind of counterintuitive, isn’t it?

However, think about your experiences as a customer. Aren’t you happier if your expectations are low but satisfied, than if your higher expectations aren’t met?

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georgeFor a very simple example, think about getting an e-mail from me today that is written well and has no typos. Tomorrow, I send you an e-mail that’s just full of typos. What would you think?

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marylynnI might think, “What’s going on with George today? Is he sick? Is he too busy? Is he just this careless sometimes?” It raises a lot of questions.

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At the start, strive to meet expectations all the time. Then find ways to gradually improve your performance so you exceed expectations regularly. That leads to bigg success!

Persona

Have you ever dealt with a person who is very chatty and friendly one day and may seem somewhat aloof at other times?

It’s okay to be moody; we just don’t need to share it with the world! We have to find a way to control our emotions so we present a consistent temperament.

Sweatin’ to an example

Think about Richard Simmons. He’s done pretty well for himself. He’s always dressed in the same kind of clothes, complete with the shortest of shorts. He’s wacky and upbeat. He’s always empathetic and dancing to the oldies!

You may not want to emulate Richard Simmons. We can understand. However, he has done an outstanding job of building his brand. You know what to expect and he consistently delivers.

All someone has to do is say Richard Simmons and you get a clear image in your mind of who he is and what he’s about.

That’s the lesson for all of us. Consistently – in your promotion, your performance and your persona – build your personal brand so you can live your life on your own terms. That’s bigg success!

What are you doing to build your personal brand?

You can share that with us by leaving a comment below, calling us at 888.455.BIGG or sending us an e-mail at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com.

Thanks so much for personally reading our post today. We brand that a good day!

Please join us next time when we share how recent bad luck and bad timing almost kept us from life on our own terms.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00364-040209.mp3

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A New Beginning for Bigg Success

budding_spring It’s the first day of spring, a day many of us look forward to every year. It represents transition from winter to summer, dark to light. We think of new beginnings and new life. It’s the season of growth.

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But spring is also a verb. We spring forward or spring into action. It implies moving forward by leaps and bounds.

Bigg news

We’re happy to say that we have some bigg news to spring on you. We wanted to share it with you, our regular readers, first. We started Bigg Success about one-and-a-third years ago.

We said we were the how-to, can-do place. But we felt the need to refine that description and to simply define bigg success. So we got to work on it. What is bigg success? What does it mean?

About six months ago, we found the answer. So we started researching, studying, and talking with people. We searched for the answer to two questions:

What makes people a bigg success? What keeps people from being a bigg success?

So here we are … the first day of spring. We’re ready to announce a new beginning for Bigg Success. We’re ready for the transition, to share what we’ve learned.

Five shows

We’ll do that next time when we kick off the first of five shows that will help you really understand what bigg success means.

What are the elements of bigg success?

How do you get from where you are now to where you want to be – from success to bigg success?

How do you keep the risk of moving to this new level as low as possible?

What challenges can you expect to face? How do you overcome them?

How can you make it all work together so you’re not constantly pulled between your personal and professional lives?

Still the same

Our knowledge has sprung forward. We have so much we want to share with you and we’re looking forward to it. But we do want to reassure you …

We’ll still do five shows a week.

We’ll still offer a lesson and, hopefully, a laugh in five minutes or so.

We’re still all about personal and professional development.

What’s new is a framework for Bigg Success to help you build your bigg success even faster!

Sharing leads to bigg success

Because we still firmly believe that all of us know more than any of us, we hope you will bring your insights so we can all benefit. We encourage you to get in on the conversation and share both what you know and what you want to know.

If just one person benefits from every show, then Bigg Success is a bigg success. If we work together as a community, we can help each other reach bigg success even faster!

Please check in next time as we kick off this series of five shows. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!  

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00355-032009.mp3

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These People Just Do Not Get It

optimists There is a group of people that most people just don’t understand. They face the same problems we all face …

… but they just don’t get how bad these problems are this time around.

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When they listen to the news, it’s the same news we all hear.

But they just don’t get it … how bad the news really is.

They have the same concerns for themselves and their families that we all have. But there is one difference between this group and the majority of people …

They think their lives are going to get better this year! The future is bright. So bright, they probably wear shades! They think the economy will turn around.

And there’s a startling number of Americans who think this way. In fact, according to a recent survey, more than one-third of all Americans are in this group. And only one out of five people said they worry about the economy on a daily basis.

Are they tuning out?

So what do you think? Are these people who think their personal situation will improve this year nuts? Or do you think they’re onto something? Or maybe they’re on something?

Here’s what they may not be on … they may not be reading, watching, or listening to the news! Bad news does seem to be good news to the news media. We’ve spoken with a large number of people over the last month or so who say they’ve tuned out the news.

Sometimes that’s a good coping mechanism. If you’re tired of hearing gloom and doom, it might be more productive to focus on something more positive.

Challenge spells opportunity

We put ourselves in this group of optimistic people. We think things will get better this year. That’s not to say we won’t still see some hiccups, but it appears that there is significant strength just below the surface.

While we face some major challenges right now, that spells opportunity for bigg goal-getters. But don’t expect to win a spelling bee if you spell it that way!

Getting real

The article we mentioned earlier cites some of the benefits of being an optimist. On average, optimists get sick less, live longer, and appear to have a higher quality of life.

This is consistent with other research we’ve seen on the benefits of being an optimist. Seeing the glass half-full does seem to pay off. But while it’s important to look for the silver lining in any dark cloud, and we don’t think it pays to be pessimistic, we also think that we should be realistic.

We have to sort through all the information in front of us to try to determine what the objective reality is. To make sure that our perceptions aren’t creating a bias as we look at a particular situation.

Because we’re more likely to make mistakes if we’re overly optimistic. We’ll see opportunities that aren’t really there. And unfortunately, we must admit that we’re speaking from experience here.

But pessimists miss out on opportunities because they either don’t see it or they don’t act on what they see.

Bigg goal-getters are an optimistic group. While one-third of the people in this survey said they think things will get better this year, we bet that the overwhelming majority of our community would put themselves in that category.

And that’s a good thing … as long as we filter our optimism with a healthy dose of realism. Be positively real. That’s the recipe for bigg success!

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Speaking of Bigg Success, did you know you can get the tips and
tools you need to be a BIGG success emailed to you every week?
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks so much for reading our post today. Join us next time when we discuss why you should stop trying to fit into the world. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00339-022609.mp3

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Profitable Passions – Part 2

career_renegade Today, we continue our conversation with Jonathan Fields, author of the great new book Career Renegade: How to Make a Great Living Doing What You Love.

Last time, Jonathan discussed why it’s so important, especially in tough times like these, to understand how to operate online because it’s an inexpensive way to swap work for money. Let’s get back to the conversation …

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georgeJonathan, I believe that really good entrepreneurs are masters at minimizing risk. I think one of the great secrets of being online is that you can test concepts with a relatively small amount of money compared to what it used to cost us in the real world. You find out fairly quickly whether or not that concept can get traction. If it doesn’t, you move on. If it does, you keep funding it.

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jonathanThat’s such a great observation. We were talking briefly before we started recording. You said that it seems like everything I do is a success. And I said, “No, everything that lasts that I do is a success.”

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Test, listen, adapt

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marylynnBecause you have two successful blogs, you have this book and then you have best yoga center in New York? You have the magic touch.

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jonathanI do a lot of different things. I’ve had failures offline and I’ve had failures online. I will continue to have many more failures in both worlds. I can tell you, hands down, that I have lost so much less money in my online failures. I’m able to jump back in to the next adventure in the blink of an eye online. Whereas when something goes wrong offline, you have a substantial amount more money, overhead or time invested in it. Everything is recoverable in my mind, but it takes longer. It may take months or years. In the online world, I’m sort of off and running. I have tried and failed online too many times to count, but that’s just part of being an entrepreneur. You’re constantly testing. The ability to listen and adapt are critical to survival, whether you’re online or offline.

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Getting started online

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marylynnSo for our audience, Jonathan – they may be thinking, “This sounds interesting. I may like to explore this online world. But I have no idea how to build a web site. I have no idea how to get started with an online business.” What would be some critical, career renegade, first steps for someone like that?

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jonathan
Step 1 – Buy my book!

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marylynn
Ha-ha, good suggestion! Does your book help walk people through that?

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jonathanIt’s interesting. When I started writing this book, I didn’t intend for it to have so much online advice, but it turned into a massive encyclopedia of references answering that question. So, if you’re interested in blogging, starting an information business, or figuring out how to turn your knowledge into a revenue stream – not just little products but real businesses – the book offers a ton of information. It also offers a ton of links and resources to other places where you can go a lot deeper because I don’t believe any one book is capable of covering the entire space. Beyond that, though, there is so much free information when you start to explore the blogosphere. I would start out with an idea, with what interests you. Search on it. Find the blogs where people write on a regular basis. To me, one of the critical things for almost anybody who is trying to build a reputation as a leader in any field is blogging. That’s something you can leverage into working for someone else or starting your own business. To me, it’s an amazing way to position yourself as the go-to person in your field of interest in an astonishingly short period of time. Anybody can start a blog, probably in less than an hour, and it costs almost nothing to do.

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georgeI became a renegade because I couldn’t find anybody to pay me what I thought I was worth. Then I found out I couldn’t afford to pay myself what I thought I was worth. What do you do about that? I had to adjust the value a little bit, but over time it’s been just fine!

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A very special offer

Jonathan amazed us with a special offer for you. He’s put together a sixteen-hour video training course called Career Renegade Flight School. You could expect to pay $1,000 for similar programs. He’s giving it away for a short while with proof that you’ve purchased his book. Go to Career Renegade to learn more.

Thanks, Jonathan, for the great advice!

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Get the tips and tools you need to be a BIGG success.
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks so much for stopping by our site today. Next time we ask, “Is your idea worth your money?” Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00320-013009.mp3

Related posts

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(Image in today's post by Career Renegade)