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lessons from natures best hunters on making money

3 Lessons to Make More Money, More Dependably

lessons from natures best hunters on making money

Listen to this post! Click a player to hear George & Mary-Lynn on The BIGG Success Show Podcast (Duration 5:30)

If you’re a business owner, solopreneur, salesperson or other professional – you’re always thinking about finding customers so you create a steady stream of income.

What if you could generate income more predictably?

What if you didn’t have to work so hard to do it?

Sounds great, doesn’t it? Want to know the key? You just have to…

Think like a wild animal!

We say that because, as we were working over the weekend, we had Nat Geo Wild on in the background. We caught several of the Built for the Kill series. The shows we watched were all about Africa’s natural born killers.

It made us think about the hunt for customers. We hasten to add – we’re NOT suggesting that you look at customers as prey.

Unfortunately, plenty of people still do think like that. It’s the wrong attitude, especially today.

But we learned three lessons about putting food on the table, more dependably, with less effort by thinking like a wild animal:

Reduce risk by knowing where you rule.
Lions rule the land. Crocodiles rule the water. As long as they stick to their respective place, all is well.

But when a croc hunts on land or a lion chases prey into the water, they may quickly find themselves in immense danger. The scale quickly tips.

This serves as a reminder for all of us – stick to your niche unless you’re so hungry it’s worth the risk to stray outside of it.

Don’t be a cheetah. They work too hard.
Cheetahs are beautiful animals. We love seeing them run in slow motion. But slow they aren’t – they’re the fastest land mammal. But here’s something we didn’t know before:

Cheetahs expend so much energy chasing down their prey, they can’t even enjoy their dinner! They have to rest first.

And while they rest, they’re vulnerable. Other animals – like hyenas and lions – claim the cheetahs’ kill about 20% of the time.

So cheetahs often find themselves working to the point of exhaustion to put food on someone else’s table.

Yes, they have their niche. Yes, they do well. But they hunt alone. It costs them dearly.

The lesson for us? Don’t be a cheetah.

Go beyond collaboration. Form a team of teams.
Lions and hyenas are bitter rivals. We gained new respect for hyenas. Yes, they’re scavengers. We learned lions are too.

Most people find lions appealing. Hyenas are ugly.

But they feed well! And the real secret we learned from these shows was from the hyenas.

For every five times a lion pride makes a kill, hyenas know about four of them. And they feed on it three of those five times!

We found that statistic staggering. What’s their secret?

They don’t hunt alone. They hunt together. But so do lions. And if you put a certain number of hyenas up against the same number of lions, the lions win every time.

Hyenas are smart. They call in reinforcement – packs of packs you might say. When they have the numbers, they take on the lions.

We can do the same in our businesses. Collaboration is critical today – don’t be an independent business, become an interdependent one.

But don’t stop there – form a team of teams:

  • So you’re not alone.
  • So you can call in reinforcements when you need them.
  • So you don’t have to work so hard to put food on your table.
  • So you can make more money, more dependably and live life on your own terms. That’s BIGG success!

Let’s talk more about teams. Tell us about you. You can leave a comment below or e-mail us at BiggInfo[at]BiggSuccess[dot]com.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00870-071713.mp3

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Can Happiness Buy Money

golden_eggWe’ve heard it again and again … money can’t buy happiness. According to the Beatles, it can’t buy love either!

But what if the order is reversed? Can happiness buy money?

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The latest research supports the notion that happiness can buy money[PDF]. It comes from a team effort with researchers from the University of Virginia, Michigan State University, and last but certainly the most, the University of Illinois. Okay, we’re biased but at least we admit it.

Happiness buys an extra $8,263 a year!

The researchers surveyed incoming freshmen at 25 elite colleges. We’re not sure how they defined “elite”, but we’re pretty sure it’s the schools we attended!

The participants reported their cheerfulness. 19 years later, when the participants were about 37 years old, the researchers asked them to report their annual income.

On average, the participants in the highest 10% on the cheerfulness scale earned over 15% more than those in the lowest 10%. In 1995 dollars, this was a difference of $8,263 a year, on average ($62,681 vs. $54,318).

Attitude to altitude

That’s a bigg difference. So not only can happiness buy you money, it can buy quite a bit of it! Apparently attitude does determine altitude!

That’s one of the bigg takeaways here. If we approach the days of our lives with the right attitude, we’ll be more productive. We’ll show more initiative. We’ll get more opportunities.

More money, less risk

We also found it interesting that the most cheerful participants were one-third less likely to ever be unemployed than the least cheerful. It appears that being of good cheer not only helps you be more prosperous, it reduces your risk as well. That’s a slam dunk!

And it flies in the face of conventional wisdom. We learn in business school that you have to take more risk to make more money. But as this study shows, you can make more money and actually have less risk with the right attitude!

That’s the bigg idea behind bigg success – to get all areas of our lives working harmoniously by finding synergy like what we see here.

Being too happy is costly

Here’s a surprising twist from this study: People who were moderately cheerful (above average on the researchers scale but not in the top 10%) earned the most on average.

They made almost 6% more than those in the top 10% and about 22% more than the bottom 10%. In 1995 dollars, that means they earned $3,563 and $11,826 more than the highest and lowest deciles respectively.

So being really happy leads to much better income than being really unhappy. But being happy instead of really happy is even better yet!

It turns out that Droopy had it right. He never said, “I’m really happy.” Just “I’m happy.”

Bigg Success is the community of bigg goal-getters. People who are usually happy, but never content. This research supports the notion that this “happy, not content” attitude leads to bigg success.

Thanks so much for checking in on us today. You can get more tips and tools to be a bigg success by subscribing to our free weekly newsletter.

Please join us next time when we’ll discuss what entrepreneurs have that MBAs don’t. 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/00446-072709.mp3

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(Image in today's post by Mattox)

How to Set Goals like John Kennedy

moon_footprint"Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed." ~ Neil Armstrong

Today we’re celebrating one of the biggest successes of all time. Forty years ago today, on July 20, 1969, three men – Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins – landed a spacecraft on the moon for the first time.

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They had launched their mission 4 days earlier, flying 203,000 miles to get there.

About six-and-a-half hours after they landed, with one-sixth of the people in the world tuned in to watch, Neil Armstrong descended down the ladder of the lunar space module. As he became the first person to walk on the surface of the moon, he uttered those famous words:

That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” 

We never get tired of hearing those words. It gives us goose bumps. They are so inspiring.

But we have to remember that it didn’t just happen. It began as a bigg goal over eight years before.

On May 25, 1961, President John F. Kennedy said:

I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.” 
 

How to set goals like President Kennedy

President Kennedy’s goal was very well-stated. It was a SMART goal. SMART is an acronym for:

Specific
Measurable
Action-Oriented
Realistic
Time- and Resource-Constrained

Let’s look at each of these five components of a well-stated goal using President Kennedy’s goal as an example.

Specific
President Kennedy said that we were going to do two things:

  • land a man on the moon
  • return him safely to earth

You can’t get much more specific than that. In this case, it may be easier to think about what wouldn’t be specific. He could have said, “We’re going to land a man somewhere in space.” That’s not specific. He clearly articulated the destination.

Measurable
President Kennedy’s goal was clearly measurable. We would certainly know if a man had landed on the moon. We could certainly tell if he returned safely to earth.

Note, though, that landing on the moon and then not being able to get back safely would have meant the goal was not reached.

Let’s bring this point on being measurable safely back to earth. Here’s an example of a goal that is not measurable:

“I’m going to increase my income next year.”

What does that mean? If you increase it by $1, did you really accomplish what you set out to do? A well-stated goal would be:

“I’m going to increase my income by 5% next year.
“I’m going to increase my income by $2,000 next year.”

Now you’ll know if you accomplish what you set out to do.

Action-oriented
When President Kennedy called for this mission to send man to the moon [PDF], he made clear that it would take a tremendous commitment by the entire nation to reach this goal.

He called for innovation. He called for new money. He said it would take a concentrated effort for an extended period of time. But it would get done.

And get done it did. In a similar vein – with our personal goals or the goals we set for our businesses – we must commit to taking the necessary steps to achieve the goal.

Realistic

President Kennedy said, “I believe we have all the resources and talent necessary.” 

Your goals can and should be bigg goals. They should stretch you beyond anything you’ve ever accomplished before. But they have to be realistic.

Otherwise, they don’t lead to bigg success. They only lead to discouragement.

Time- and Resource-constrained

This one’s easy. President Kennedy said we would accomplish this goal by the end of the decade. It was 1961. The goal was reached July 20, 1969.

He made it clear that resources would have to be diverted from other good causes if this goal was to be reached.

When you set your goals, be sure to give yourself a due date. When will you accomplish this goal? What resources will be required to do it? Do you have them?

Goal-setting is not goal-getting

John F. Kennedy was able to reduce all of this into a simple goal statement of 31 powerful words that set this course of events into action.

Because he wasn’t just a bigg goal-setter, he was a bigg goal-getter.

Setting goals is just the first step in that process. We have a great tool – the Bigg Goal-Getter’s Workbook – which takes you through the entire six step process to put goal-setting and goal-getting to work for you. It’s free when you subscribe to our free newsletter, The Bigg Success Weekly

Just one final point:

Good goals have a reason behind them. They serve a bigger purpose. Every goal should lead you closer to the bigg success of which you dream. So we’ll close with John F. Kennedy himself explaining why sending a man to the moon was so important:

We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.
 

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00441-072009.mp3

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(Image and quotes in today's post from NASA)

Simply Living Simply

simple_houseBigg success is life on your own terms. Today we’ll focus on money, one of the five elements of bigg success. There’s a tendency to define bigg success as having more money.

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But is it possible to have too much money?

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georgeI remember Donald Trump being asked about the difference between $70 million and $700 million. He said, “A bigger boat.”

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marylynn
Some people don’t need a bigger boat. Other people don’t need a boat at all!

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georgeThat reminds me of something one of my mentors once said, “There are two good days in the life of a boat owner. The day you buy it and the day you sell it!”

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marylynnToys are the fun side of money. It’s the side we usually think about. But more money also means more responsibilities – more legal issues, more accounting hassles, more management headaches even if it’s just managing your portfolio.

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A lot of people think you can just hire someone to do those things for you, but you have to be careful how much you delegate. No one will look out for your money like you will.

A simple choice

While our society often seems to equate bigg success with bigg money, it’s important to determine what you want. Bigg success is life on your own terms. Live the life that makes you the happiest.

For some people, there is such a thing as too much money. They choose a different path to bigg success.

We can reduce this to a simple choice:

  • adjust your lifestyle to your wealth or …
  • … accumulate enough wealth to support your lifestyle.

Now don’t think it’s a rags or riches mentality. You don’t have to live like a pauper if you choose to adjust your lifestyle.

Many people are perfectly content simply living simply, but comfortably. They have a nice house, drive nice cars, and take nice vacations. Of course, you get to define nice.
 

Simply pick your number

Let’s look at the difference between these two choices. First, let’s say you can live life on your own terms with an income of $100,000 a year. Financial planners tell us we can draw down our portfolio at the rate of 4% a year when we retire. So that means you would need $2.5 million of assets to support your lifestyle.

Now, what would it take if you wanted to live large? We hear a $250,000 a year income is now considered “rich” here in the States. So let’s use that as the magic number.

Then you would need a portfolio of $6.25 million.

Quite a difference, huh? You don’t have to stress about accumulating such a large portfolio if you adjust your lifestyle to your wealth.

Some people enjoy a higher quality of life by choosing to simply live simply yet comfortably.

They worry about money less because they have less money.

It’s life on your own terms. You pick the path that makes you the happiest. That’s bigg success!

What about you? Are you happy living simply or do you want to accumulate wealth?

Share that with us by leaving a comment below, calling us at 888.455.BIGG (2444) or e-mailing us at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com.

Thanks so much for simply spending your time with us today!

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Would you like more tips and tools to live your life on your own terms?
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Please join us next time when we’ll talk about the one-minute layoff. 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/00436-071409.mp3

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(Image in today's post by ba1969)

Live Like a King on Less

ocean-viewMost people’s portfolios have been hit hard. They’ve come back some but we’re still down. People who are close to retiring are the most worried. However, we all have to think about having enough money for retirement.

We have three options – invest more, risk more, or plan to live on less when we do retire. None of those sound particularly attractive, do they?

Unless you can live like a king or queen on less!

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That’s why a recent article in Business Week caught our attention. It says that Panama is becoming a popular destination for retirees. It’s been going on for a few years now but really seems to be gaining momentum.

We hasten to say that, even if you’re not thinking about retiring soon or you wouldn’t even consider retiring outside your country, you still might consider putting Panama on your list of vacation destinations.

In addition to the Business Week article, we referred to PanamaInfo.com as a source for the information we’ll discuss today.

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georgeFrom everything I saw as we prepared for this show, I’d say a trip to Panama is in our future! I want to check it out.

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marylynnI’m on board, George. When are we leaving? Actually, let me rephrase that … I’m good with our weather this time of the year. I want to go there in the winter when it’s freezing cold here and 80 degrees there!

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Climate

It’s tropical and humid during the day most of the year in the highlands, which includes the capital of the country, Panama City. Temperatures range between eighty and ninety degrees Fahrenheit during the day.

The main tourist season corresponds with their dry season which runs from mid-December through May. In the rainy season, though, it rains for an hour or two about every day. That’s also when the hotels offer special rates.

Topography

Panama is an isthmus that connects Central America with South America. Hence the Panama Canal!

It has about 1,000 miles of coastline and 1,500 islands nearby. A mountain slices through the middle of the country. Panama also has five million acres of parks and more species of birds than the U.S. and Canada combined.

Cost of living

The main reason retirees are flocking to Panama is its low cost of living. The government encourages retirees to spend their golden years there. Seniors get discounts on just about everything.

For example, they save 50% on tickets to concerts, the theater and movies. A movie ticket normally costs $4 (dollars are the currency in Panama). Seniors pay $2.

They also get 25% off at restaurants, a 30% discount on most travel, except flights on which they save 25%. You name it and seniors likely get a discount, even on things like dentist and doctor visits.

Not that the price is high, relatively speaking, in the first place. The Business Week article points out that Panama has first-class health care at Third World prices.

Seniors even get a 50% discount on home closing costs. Once you buy your property, you have all the ownership rights any Panamanian would have.

And you don’t have to pay any property taxes for 20 years or pay any tax on your foreign income.

To give you some perspective on how inexpensive homes are there, the Business Week article mentions a couple who bought a 3,000 square foot oceanfront penthouse in 2007 for $250,000. At that time, it would have cost $3,000,000 to buy that same property in Miami.

Of course, it’s a lot cheaper in Miami now, but it’s still not close to $250,000. Speaking of Miami, Panama is only about a 2½ hour flight from Miami.

There’s a local joke that Panama is just like Miami. Except that it is safer. More people speak English. There are no hurricanes. And Americans are more popular!

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Would you like more tips and tools to live your life on your own terms?
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks for reading our post today. Please join us next time when we ask, “Can you have too much 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/00435-071309.mp3

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