Monthly Archives: December 2012

2012 in Review

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A few months ago I started Find My Motivation as a way to keep my friends updated on my goals and to track all the cool things I saw, used, or read about accomplishing your dreams. Four months and nearly 120 posts later, I still can’t believe I’ve been able to keep my blog going with a new post every day. I wanted to thank you, my readers, for continuing to support Find My Motivation by checking up on me every now and then.

2012 has been an amazing year for me personally. At the beginning of the year, I made a few New Year’s Resolutions, and I am proud to say I have completed most of them and made progress on the remaining ones. I have been able to study abroad debt-free at the London School of Economics, fall in love with my girlfriend, started working out and living a healthier lifestyle. 2012 is over, but the progress I have made will not be lost when today is over. I have had so much fun writing and do not plan to stop.

Writing Find My Motivation has been a huge lesson to me on self-discipline, not being afraid to put myself to the world, and learning from my mistakes. A year from now, I hope to look back at what I am writing today and say I have continue to learn and make progress. I hope that during your time reading Find My Motivation (whether you’ve read only one or two posts, or read all 120) that you have found the motivation to pursue your own dreams and started working on your own goals.

Tomorrow is the first 2013, if you need a reason to start that New Year’s Resolution or goal, then look no further. As always my blog and I will be here when you need to find your motivation.

Thank you and see you for 365 more posts in 2013.

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Exercise:

Spend today with those you love.

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

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The Best of 2012

I wanted to take today, to feature some of my favorite posts from this year (the last four months).

I started Find My Motivation in September with some posts focused on my personal experiences.

October touched on many themes of blog such as your environment and using the Law of Attraction.

In November I wrote about overcoming a barrier known as age. (I am too old) or (I am too young).

December 2012 included a bunch of ups and downs for me. Learning from my failures was necessary for my personal growth.

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Exercise:

Did I miss one that you think should have been on my list? (Please let me know below) – no registration required.

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

How to Quit Smoking (or break a bad habit)

A few days ago, I received the following email from a long time reader who wants to quit smoking. Below is the email (name has been replaced) and my reply.

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Dear Davis,

I have been reading your blog for a few months. I really appreciate what you are doing. I wanted to get some help from you. I don’t think I am the only one, but I wanted to break a habit in 2013, in particular I want to stop smoking; I’ve tried in the past but keep relapsing. What should I do?

Thanks,

– don’t know where to start

————- 

Hi don’t know where to start,

By emailing me, you have taken a huge step in starting. “Quit Smoking” is actually one of the most common New Year’s Resolutions (it is the fourth most common). I will do my best to help you.

First you have your goal which is to “quit smoking.” Next is to figure out where you are at, how many cigarettes you are currently smoking a day for example. For example, if you are smoking about 20 a day (the average or pack-a-day), this is a starting point.

Next, I want you to list ALL the reasons why you want to quit smoking; these reasons can be for your health (living longer), finance (saving money), or even self-motivated (I want to prove to others I can do it).

Then, I want you to figure out some objectives for your goal. Be specific about your objectives, do you want to go “cold-turkey” or gradually (which might be easier) and smoke less and less each week until you are down to zero?

When you decide on your method, I want you to create a plan on how you will accomplish your objectives. How will you prevent yourself from buying cigarettes or lighting up? How will you prevent yourself from being tempted (are you friends with smokers who encourage you?). You might want to do research into how other people quit smoking. Since we live in era of the internet, this is very easy. Essentially have a plan for breaking your habit that you can stick to for the long-run not just the first few days.

Next I want you to have a deadline for each of your objectives. (“I will  reduce my smoking by 2 cigarettes by the first 2 weeks”, etc.). These deadlines will push you to stay motivated.

Now you have to be honest with yourself and identify all of your obstacles (friends who smoke, lack of motivation, etc.) and how you will eliminate or reduce these obstacles. This stage is crucial.

To further motivate you, I want you to enlist help from friends and family (a support network). These should be people who care about you and want you to break the habit. There are also online and off-line support groups of recovering smokers who can also help you through your process. Getting help from someone (or people) who has been there and done that will increase your chances of success. When I started working out, I called Tina every night so she could ask me, “did you work out today” and she also saw me workout. Having a support network keeps you motivated and reduces relapses.

As the weeks past, monitor your progress. You can have a friend monitor you or even start a blog about your progress. This is up to you, but you need a way to stay accountable to yourself. Is your plan working? How could it be better? Are you going too fast or even too slow? Always keep reevaluating yourself and your plan.

Breaking a habit takes a long time and doesn’t happen over night, but it all begins with the first day. I hope I have answered your question the best I could and want to hear about your success in the future.

Thanks for reaching out to me and I wish you all the best,

– Davis

Featured Friday: Public Announcement of Resolutions for 2013

Yesterday, I mentioned why it is important to announce your New Year’s Resolutions, two of our long time readers wanted to take the opportunity to announce their resolution for 2013, but due to the nature of their goal wanted to keep their names anonymous but their resolution public.

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Opening a X Store

*X is being withheld for confidentiality

Goals:

  1. Create a Business Plan
  2. Acquire Funding
  • From Family
  • From Bank Loans
  • From Fellowships
  1. Where to put our store that can maximize publicity and profit
  • The aim is to open a store in an area where there is a high traffic of college students
  • Potential areas: near local colleges and universities
  1. Marketing: how can we spread the word?
  • Facebook
  • Surveys
  • Sales/Deals/Incentives
  • Word of Mouth
  • TV ads
  1. Who do we get our supplies?
  • Research and ask current stores
  1. Buying a store
  • All the legal documents needed to start a business
  • Research FDA’s regulation and follow their guidelines
  1. Décor (who should we hire to decorate and brand my items) (what look are we going for?)
  • Thinking about a store having a relax and modern ambience where college students can mingle or study
  1. Website (who can we hire to start and update my website) (how can we make my website the top search)
  2. Taxes/Forms/Legal stuff
  3. Employees (how many employees should we hire and the pay/benefits that they should receive)

Obstacles that we may encounter:

  1. No funds
  • Apply for Family Loans
  • Apply for more Fellowships
  1. No Customer Loyalty
  • Give incentives/coupons
  • Free samples on the first day
  • Have caring employees so customers will feel more appreciated
  • The more time you come to the store, the more rewards you will get
  1. Competitors
  • Only competitor is Y and there is not a X store anywhere nearby
  1. No Time
  • Make time by cutting less classes/clubs and designate specific time to work on business
  1. Lack of Motivation
  • Read Davis’s Blog
  • Turn to family and friends for support
  1. Lack of experience
  • Ask for advice from people who were successful doing start-ups
  • Find a mentor
  • Read books
  • Go to seminars

Support Network:

  • Family
  • Close Friends

Deadlines for our Goals:

  1. Business Plan à January 6, 2013
  2. Acquire Enough Funding àSummer 2015 (when we decide to buy a store)
  3. Finalizing Location à Summer 2015
  4. Marketing à Winter 2015
  5. Suppliers à Spring 2015
  6. Purchasing a Store à Summer 2015
  7. Décor à Summer 2014/Fall 2015
  8. Creating a Website à Winter 2015
  9. Taxes/Forms/Legal Stuff à Summer 2013/Fall 2014
  10. Employees à Winter 2014

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If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

Effective New Year’s Resolutions: Sharing Your Goals

Over the last week, I have talked about how to create successful New Year’s Resolutions so that by this same time next year you will be among the 8% who actually accomplish their New Year’s Resolutions and not the 92% who wonder what if.

The resolution I am sharing with you today was created with the same progress I wrote about on previous days: being specific, crafting a plan, and creating a support network.

  1. Living a Healthy Lifestyle
  • Create and Stick to High Protein, High Fiber Diet      (Non-Negotiable)

i.     Modified Bob Harper

  1. Drink only water and one full glass before each meal
  2. Eat a real breakfast (egg whites, no added sugars, no bacon etc.)
  3. Eat protein at every meal (about 60-70 grams per day)
  4. Eat 30-50 grams of fiber per day
  5. No Refined Flours & Grains, Fast, Fried, or late night foods
  6. Limit Carbs after Lunch ( eat ‘lean & green’ at night)
  7. Read labels and know true proportions
  8. Eat vegetables every day.
  9. Go to bed early
  10. Allow one splurge meal every two week
  • Continue to workout at least 30 minutes a day

i.     Sunday:                  P90X Chest and Back (60 mins)                                     [Gym]

ii.     Monday:                 Insanity Pure Cardio (40 mins)/Abs (20 mins)         [Dorm]

iii.     Tuesday:                P90X Shoulders and Arms (60 mins)                            [Gym]

iv.     Wednesday:         P90X Core Synergistics (60 mins)                                   [Dorm]

v.     Thursday:              Insanity Plyometric Cardio Circuit (45 mins)              [Dorm]

vi.     Friday:                     P90X Leg & Back [40 mins]/Abs (20 mins)              [Gym]

vii.     Saturday:               P90X Stretch (60 mins)                                                      [Dorm]

I shared with you one of my resolutions because the last lesson I want to leave you with is the power of telling someone about your New Year’s Resolutions. For more on why sharing your goals works check out these past articles:

Writing Down Your Goals

Public Commitment 

Exercise:

Share your Effective New Year’s Resolutions with someone.

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

Effective Resolutions using Support Groups

Over the last few days, we’ve talked about setting effective resolutions, forming plans, and today will want to talk about how to stay motivated. Today’s article will be shorter than most because most the what I want to discuss has been written in the past.

With all of my goals, I always use support groups and networks.Undoubtedly, having support groups have been the key to my success in the past. Having people support me through my goal and keep me on track when I lose focus has made my goals possible.

If you don’t know what they are or want a refresher check out these articles:

Support Networks

Mentors

Getting Feedback

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Exercise:

Form your support networks

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

Merry Christmas (and Part 3 of Effective New Years Resolutions)

Merry Christmas everyone. I am on my way to spend Christmas with Tina’s family and then with my own family, but before that, I want to continue our discussion on setting effective New Year’s Resolution.

The main problem is that when people set resolutions (or even better, setting effective resolutions) this is where they stop. They simply think that writing down their goals and having positive thinking will be enough to accomplish their resolutions. The thinking is that eventually they will have time to work on their goals. While writing down your goals and having positive thinking helps, you also need a plan to accomplish your goals (they don’t accomplish themselves).

A good plan for completing your resolution should include

  • Clear Objectives (see yesterday’s article)
  • Plans on how you will accomplish your objectives
  • Deadlines (if you don’t have an idea of what you are working for, you will be easily frustrated)

I will use one example from yesterday, which was to “Spending More Time with Family”

First is to have clear objectives:

  • Spend one afternoon per week with family

Plans for accomplishing Objectives

  • Block out 30 minutes every Thursday before bed to plan activities
  • Turn off cellphone, disconnect Wifi during family time
  • Make sure everyone is there

Deadlines

  • Start first week of January (as soon as New Years Begin)

This is just an example of the type of plans you could have.

For more details about forming resolutions with plans that help you accomplish your goals, click and read on my past articles:

Planning

Planning Fallacy

Exercise:

Start thinking about plans for your resolution

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

 

Effective New Year’s Resolutions

Today is the first article on forming effective New Year’s Resolutions. More specifically I wanted to talk about how to pick effective resolutions. Effective Resolutions should be worded specifically and have clear objectives

Today I will also use three of the most common NY Resolutions and discuss how they could be made more achievable by being specific and having objectives.

  • Lose weight
  • Spend more time with friends and family
  • Learn something new

Be specific. General and vague goals give you no direction and with no direction you will be overwhelmed and easily discouraged. You do not have to be exact to the decimal point, but at least have an idea of what you want.

  • Lose weight – How much weight do you want to lose?
  • Spend more time with friends and family – How much more time do you want to with friends and family?
  • Learn something new – What do you want to learn (language, online course, real estate, etc.)?

Having Objectives. You need a way to gauge the progress you have made on your resolutions. Below are some examples.

  • Losing at least 20 pounds – How will you accomplish this? Having a Paleo diet? Going to the gym three times a week?
  • Spending Sunday afternoon with family- How will you make sure you have time for this? How will you make sure you can make this weekly?
  • Learn French- How will you learn French (Rosetta Stone? Online course? Books? Pimsleur? Etc.) How will you measure how much French you have acquired?

These are just some things to think about as you craft your New Year’s Resolutions. Be clear and have measuring points.

For more tips about goal in general. Check out some of my older posts:

Tomorrow I will continue with how to form plans to achieve your New Year’s Resolutions (for long-time readers, this will be review; for new readers, be prepared to learn some of the best secrets of successful people).

Exercise:

Start thinking about your New Year’s Resolutions.

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

Starting New Year’s Resolutions

This is my favorite time of the year. It is a period to spend with family and loved ones, celebrate the end of another year, and to prepare for the next.

Aside from the plethora of food, warm hugs, and gifts, I like to take the last week of the year to think ahead to what I want to do next year. Much of what I want to accomplish comes in the form of New Year’s Resolutions.

Having New Year’s Resolution gives you direction and idea of how you want to shape your future. Remember back to the analogy of the motor and the compass: by having resolutions you set flexible expectations for yourself.

The easy part is having resolutions, in fact about 86% of Americans begin a New Year with at least one resolution. The hard part is sticking to them; only about 8% of those who start with a resolution actually completely them by December.

If you’ve read my blog, you know I am about setting goals and seeing them through. Over the next few days, I will talk about crafting your New Year’s Resolution to increase your chance of accomplishing them, creating a plan to complete your resolutions, discuss common problems about staying motivated and how to overcome them, and bringing everything together on the last day by sharing with you one of my resolutions for 2013 using the same method.

I hope you are as excited as I am for the next few articles.

Exercise:

Think about what you want to accomplish in 2013.

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.

Keep Going! (When new routines become second nature)

I overslept by a good two hours this morning(I spent the previous night working on a video project; I was a victim of the planning fallacy). If you had asked me a few months ago what the first thing on my mind was, it would have been worrying that I would be late for class. Today [this post was written on December 12th] when I woke up, the first thing on my mind was missing out on going to the gym and writing my blog before class.

When I woke up and saw how much I would miss my morning routine, I knew that I had reached a high point my goal of living a healthy lifestyle. Things such as working out, opting for the stairs, eating healthy, avoiding fatty foods, were once conscious choices I had to make, but now I don’t have to give them a second thought.

A few months ago, I avoided working out, because I did not let feeling exhausted, getting up early in the morning, or seeing how physically weak I was; I see these reasons now as irrational excuses. But after 3 months, going to the gym is as automatic to me as shutting off my alarm or getting dressed in the morning. What I used to dread I have come to enjoy and see as a normal part of my day.

Realize that as you begin a new routine that you might not enjoy, but with a end result you want, that once your mind and body becomes adjusted, doing that routine becomes as second nature as brushing your teeth or washing your hair.

The hardest part about dieting is starting. The hardest part of having a morning class is getting up. The hardest part about learning a new language is picking up the book. The hardest part about a new routine is starting, but once you have started, the hardest part is stopping.

stop

Exercise:

Realize that the hardest part about a new goal is starting.

If you have any comments, suggestions for future topics, or want write contact me at findmymotivation@gmail.com.

My blog is updated daily. Come back tomorrow for another article.