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Really Bad Days Spark Innovation

bad day_climbing uphillWe had dinner with a friend recently. He’s an entrepreneur turned venture capitalist. We talked about what sparked the change. He said, “A bad day”.

We can relate. If it weren’t for a bad day in each of our lives, we would have never started BIGG success. We both reached a point, independently and coincidentally at about the same time, where we decided it was time to move on.

Good days lift our spirits. Bad days sap our strength. Unless they’re really bad.

When we get really beaten up, when we’ve hit our head against the wall one too many times, when we just can’t take it anymore – that’s the spark for innovation in our lives, in our businesses and for our customers.

BIGG success is life on your own terms. It’s about entrepreneuring your life – taking control to build the life that’s custom designed just for you. Persistence pays in pursuing your dream. But when the right bad day comes, you know it’s time to move on.

You’ll see yourself rising from the ashes of frustration. You’ll the warmth from the flames of hope. Soon the fire in your belly will roar hot again. It’s that fire that will help you reach BIGG success.

If you’ve had a bad day, send us a note at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com. Maybe we can help you light the fire.

Image in this post by hortongrou

The Best Way to Think Outside the Box

inside_the_boxThere’s a cliché of which we’ve grown quite tired. “Think outside the box.” When we heard it said yet again the other day, we had an epiphany.

It’s a way to make sure that you never have to worry about not thinking outside the box. Here it is:

If you always want to think outside the box, don’t get in the box in the first place!

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Refuse to accept things at face value. Stand firm against group think. Resist the urge to just go along.

The way you do that is to … expose yourself!

It’s the naked truth!

Allow us to clarify what we mean here. We’re saying to make sure you have plenty of diversity in your life.

The more ways you can look at an issue, the more likely you are to come up with the solution you seek. You can look at an issue from more directions when you expose yourself. 

Let’s get to the bare facts. Here are five things to which you can expose yourself to think innovatively. 

Expose yourself to new people.
This one sounds kind of funny, doesn’t it? We don’t mean this in a weird way. Just make sure you don’t just meet people just like you.

Reach out to people in different fields. Get to know people in different areas of the world – it’s easier than ever to do that these days with social networking.

Expose yourself to new opinions.
You will accomplish this, in part, by making friends with a diverse group of people. You can also do it by watching, listening or reading that you don’t usually tune into.

Expose yourself to new places.
This can be as simple as trying a different restaurant instead of the old stand-by. If you usually go downtown, go out to the country or vice versa. Go somewhere else on vacation this year.

Expose yourself to new activities.
Try something you’ve never tried before. Take a class in something you have an interest in but you’ve never really explored. It could even be as simple as taking a different route to work.

Expose yourself to new tools.
If you usually use a fork, try chopsticks. If you have never texted a message, give it a whirl.

You get the idea. Try something different with someone different somewhere different.

When it comes to our finances, we invest in a diversified portfolio of assets to maximize our returns and minimize our risk. Well, it’s safe to assume you’ll think outside the box if you make sure you have variety in your life. It’s the spice that leads to bigg success!

How do you make sure you think innovatively?
Share that with us by leaving a comment below, sending us an e-mail at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com or leaving a voice mail at 888.455.BIGG (2444).

We thank you so much for checking in with us today!

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Please join us next time when we’ll talk about the next new thing. 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/00483-091709.mp3

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(Image in today's post by alamosbasement, CC 2.0)

How Smart is Smart Enough

BackIt’s Back-to-School time so we’ve been talking about lifelong learning. This is the eighth show in our ten-post series. We wondered:

How smart do you have to be to reach BIGG success?

Latent intelligence is useless by definition.

Theoretical intelligence may help you frame an issue, but it doesn’t go far enough.

Applied intelligence drives results.

You have to be smart enough to apply your intelligence.
Read more

4 Secrets for Learning New Tricks

dog_daysToday’s post is the second in a five part series on Dog Days. There’s an old saying, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” If that’s true, then one secret to learning new tricks is …

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Don’t be an old dog!

Of course, we can’t control that in a physical sense. But that’s of less importance than keeping ourselves young in mind and spirit.

We must rediscover that sense of wonder we had when we were young.

Before we were afraid to try new things.
Before we were scared of taking risks.
Before we worried about being embarrassed.

When we were fascinated by new things.
We were captivated with new experiences.
We were curious about the world around us.
We made new discoveries day by day.

Then we grew up and became old dogs.

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marylynn
I told George to speak for himself on that one!

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george Boy, I inadvertently insulted myself on two fronts … in a single sentence I managed to call myself “old” and a “dog”. My point is that sometimes we learn the wrong lessons.

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Picture this: A dog goes for a walk and steps on a bee. It hurts. But instead of watching out for bees when he goes for walks in the future, he refuses to walk at all.

Let’s bring it back to human terms. Maybe you stuck your neck out on an opportunity that didn’t work out the way you planned. So now, when a new opportunity presents itself, you roll over and play dead!

It’s time for some new tricks. Experience is a great teacher, but it’s curiosity that leads to innovation.

The dog trainer

Trainers can work wonders with dogs. The same is true for us humans.

Look for a coach or mentor who has done what you’re trying to do. Someone who has walked the path you want to go down.

Your coach can teach you the tricks you need to get where you want to be. From his or her experience, combined with your own, you can discover how to reach bigg success faster.

A doggy treat

Dogs get a treat when they learn new tricks. Likewise, give yourself a reward every time you learn a new trick or reach a new plateau.

Bigger tricks deserve bigger treats. Sounds kind of like Halloween, doesn’t it? Only here it’s trick for treat.

When you really move that proverbial needle, when you stretch yourself and accomplish something significant for your bigg success, give yourself a treat that has particular meaning for you.

The dog and pony show

Don’t get stuck doing that same old dog and pony show. Stretch your mind by exploring new things. Study things outside your area of expertise.

You’ll find that you bring new perspectives back to your main area of expertise by exploring outside of it. You’ll discover new solutions to old problems.

So we think you can teach an old dog new tricks. In fact, an old dog has to learn new tricks to reach bigg success!

If you’d like to learn more new tricks, subscribe to our FREE newsletter, The Bigg Success Weekly. It’s free!

Thanks for sharing your time with us today. Please join us next time when we’ll discuss relationships in a dog eat dog 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/00452-080409.mp3

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(Image in today's post by mioawee)

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.
 

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/00441-072009.mp3

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The Single Biggest Barrier To Your Success

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