This gets said sooo often in many different ways. We are constantly being told to get out and do something we wouldn't normally do. To do things outside your comfort zone, where the magic happens.

..so why is it still so hard to do.. and why do we need to do it? And even more importantly, how do we do it?

It's hard to do because its uncomfortable, it causes a level of anxiety which our bodies and minds perceive as danger and find excuses to retreat back to safety, in the comfort zone.

However being just outside our comfort zone, where you get that small amount of anxiety increases your performance and productivity. We get lazy when things are too easy and do the minimum required to get by. Get outside that zone and you become focused and driven.

When you choose to take risks in a controlled environment, forcing yourself into a place of uncertainty, you also get better at dealing with it when life throws it at you unexpectedly. You become more comfortable being uncomfortable so when life forces you out of your comfort zone, you don't fall down a cliff.

The more you push your boundaries, the more you'll be able to keep pushing them, expanding where your comfort zone actually lies so that the things that were difficult and induced anxiety become easy. This is how you create growth.

Trying new things can make us reflect on our old ideas and where they clash with our new knowledge, and inspire us to learn more and challenge confirmation bias, our tendency to only seek out information we already agree with.

This doesn't always mean going out and jumping off a cliff or facing your biggest fears every weekend.

It can be as simple (perhaps not as easy) as slowing down and taking the time to look at what's going on in your life, and being honest with yourself. It can be challenging yourself to respond in a different way than you always have.

5 things you can do this week to get outside your comfort zone:

  1. Switch up your routine - Routines are as much about comfort as they are about efficiency. Having good daily habits are important but they can always be improved so you need to be comfortable with changing them. There's no harm in going to a different cafe, hanging out with different people, having dinner at a different time, if your life allows, have a day off on Wednesday. 
  2. Move toward your fears  - I found that the things I’m afraid to do are often the things that have the greatest potential to expand my life. Now when I feel fear, it’s usually an indicator that I need to do that thing I’m afraid of. Making a commitment to lean into that each day has been really uncomfortable at times, but it has also been responsible for a lot of great memories and a deep level of personal satisfaction. - —Mark Krassner, Expectful
  3. Give Up Control - This was a big one for me a couple of years ago, the mere thought of handing over any part of my business to someone else made me nauseaus. Over time though, as I let go and trusted other people to manage my social media, my accounts, my flight bookings, it became so comfortable for me I was named the "Delegation Queen". If you're one of those people that can't watch someone else chop vegetables because they're doing it wrong, it might be time to start finding ways to give up control in different area's of your life. 
  4. Agree to something you wouldn't normally consider - This can be fun. All it takes is for you to say yes to completely random things that get put infront of you, that you'd normally say no to without thinking. Eat the weird food. Go on the crazy adventure. Play the game of sport you know you'll suck at. Do the live video interview. You'll get some amazing life experiences and guaranteed laughs doing this. 
  5. Get infront of the camera - Speaking of live videos, I know this is one that makes you all uncomfortable, it even makes me uncomfortable if I havne't been doing it consistently. We live in a world of video content and video search. If you can get comfortable with this, it will serve your business greatly. Create landing page videos, tutorials, do a live stream. The more content you can create the better, the more comfortable you get infront of the camera, the better your videos will be. 

As soon as it starts to make you uncomfortable, you know you're doing it right, and you keep putting 1 foot in front of the other, 1 little baby step at a time. It's not supposed to be easy, it's not supposed to feel amazing, that's the whole point. And once you know that, it's far easier to follow through as you become comfortable with being uncomfortable.

 


Knowledge can be the most useful resource you will find. It can help you make more money, be better at sports, make better decisions, grow as a human and as almost anything else you can think of.

Getting access to knowledge isn't difficult, there are millions of books, podcasts, online trainings, videos, seminars and coaches all trying to shove their knowledge down your throat. We live in a world of information overload. The problem with this, is people are finding and taking on board what already aligns with their current belief system, to confirm with themselves what they are doing right now is correct, and never really taking on board anything new or changes any of their behaviours or habits based on new knowledge or beliefs.

 

And even those that are finding new ways of thinking and new knowledge, they still go "Well that's awesome, I can see how that would benefit my life, I should give it a go" but they never do.

 

The people that succeed, I mean really succeed and are continuously growing and expanding and doing better and better and the things in their life.. they take action. Knowledge, without action, is useless.

In all of your knowledge acquiring, find 1 thing at a time to take action on. Write it down, and work on it until its a habit. And then you can take on another thing and do the same. And slowly but surely over time, you will have completely changed your knowledge, your beliefs, you action, your habits and your life.


5 Marketing Strategies From Major Brands: What You Can Learn From Their Mistakes and Successes

Marketing is a spectator sport. We can all learn from each other by observing what brands do in the marketplace, even if we don’t have big budgets.

Specifically, we’re finding more and more brands making a buzz in the court of social media, and there’s something to be learned from every one of them: the good and the, shall we say, not-so-good.

Marketing strategy mishaps

PepsiCo

One of the most newsworthy marketing moments of late came from PepsiCo, which made headlines about snacks designed for women. Twitter lit up like a Christmas tree talking about “Lady Doritos,” asking CEO Indra Nooyi to focus on the bigger issues facing women that are making headlines right now. Even Ellen had something to say about it! 

The lesson: Before any public announcement, prepare a message track that you have vetted with those closest to you to make sure it all makes sense. Then, make sure you understand the greater consciousness happening in the world and consider it in everything you say and do.

Ram

We recently enjoyed an entire buffet of Super Bowl commercials, many of them scoring quite well with consumers. But, one commercial in particular failed to resonate the way the company must have hoped. Ram Trucks used a voiceover clip from a speech from Dr. Martin Luther King that talks about service, and in the context of the commercial, it came across as disingenuous.

The lesson: Make sure your branding is consistent across the board, from your product or service offering to all of your marketing materials and messaging. 

Marketing strategy successes

L.L. Bean

L.L. Bean, via Facebook and perhaps other touch-points, announced that it was no longer offering a lifetime guarantee, but rather a one-year return policy along with further consideration for defects that occur after that time. The company basically blamed those who abused the policy for having to eliminate it.

Yet, many customers explained that the lifetime guarantee was the only reason to purchase and the only justification for the price points. L.L. Bean kept quiet for a moment, and let other customers come to its defense by explaining the reasonableness of the policy and the need to uphold sustainable business policies. I actually joined in myself on that one! As a result, what could have been bad buzz quickly became a non-news item.

The lesson: Let your loyalists speak on your behalf in good times and in bad. Others can be far more influential for you than you can be for yourself.

CVS

Retailer CVS announced that it will no longer retouch photography in the marketing of its beauty products and it will stamp or label any other brands who continue to retouch or alter imagery, in an effort to promote positive self-esteem and healthy beauty standards. While viewed in conjunction with its decision to discontinue tobacco products a few years back, this move was heralded as yet another triumph.

The lesson: create a powerful platform that people can rally behind and that is at the core of what you do, and stick to it by repeating it with consistent and innovative initiatives over and over again.

Gerber

After 140,000 applications to be the new Gerber spokesbaby, the brand picked its first baby with Down Syndrome after 90 years, which met with an immediate standing ovation on social media. The brand announced Lucas on The Today Show. According to Gerber CEO Bill Partyka in a press release, it was Lucas’s “winning smile and joyful expression” that won him the role and by the looks of the pic everyone could see why.  In one moment, Gerber proved its long-lasting mantra of inclusion that says “every baby is a Gerber baby.”

The lesson: Make sure your marketing materials reflect your brand — and prevailing attitudes that are relevant to your brand.

Marketing is certainly a spectator sport, for big brands and small. Pay attention to what’s out there in the marketplace, and you’ll learn things that you can positively apply to your marketing plan, too.

Jim Joseph
Contributor / Marketing Master – Author – Blogger – Dad
Originally Published on Entrepreneur.com 

80% of the Australian population over 14 has an active Facebook … 

If you think that's crazy, 50% of them use it every single day! 400 new users sign up for Facebook EVERY MINUTE around the world. Users access Facebook an average of eight times per day!

So what you have here, is the majority of your audience, that you can access every day, multiple times per day, and new potential customers becoming available to access every single day. If you're not doing everything you can to make the most out of it, it poses the question of whether you should be in the looney bin. If you're all a bit lost with it here's some free information.

1. Add a recognizable profile picture - company logo!!

2. Choose an engaging cover photo - high quality! And check it out on your desktop and mobile, they display differently and the dimensions change OFTEN! 

3. Post GREAT content, every single day!

4. Brand your content

5. Start doing LIVE videos. 1 in 5 Facebook videos is now a live broadcast, and for good reason, it reaches A LOT more people

6. Spend half of your advertising budget on content that received great organic engagement - they have viral potential

7. Spend the other half of your advertising budget on ads that create action.

8. ENGAGE with your customers

9. Talk your own talk - its SOCIAL media. Perfectly curated marketing spiels get LESS engagement than rants from a real person

8. Never use more than 2 hashtags on Facebook, even Facebook thinks it looks spammy and reduces your reach

9. Add a call-to-action button - it drives people to take action

10. Fill in your ABOUT section. Its one of the first places people click when trying to get more information about your business

facebook stats

If all of this still sounds like complete jibberish or you really want to get the most out of Facebook find someone to teach you! Get some Social Media Training! Or better yet, delegate, get someone to do it for you! This should not be something you "will get around to later".  In case you missed it, 80% of the population is on Facebook and 50% of the population use it every single day, 8 times a day, this should be your number 1 marketing priority!!

 

 

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Playful adults have the ability to transform everyday situations, even stressful ones, into something entertaining. - Lynn Barnett

Do you ever sometimes look around at everyone and think, why is everyone so damn grown and stressed about everything with their stupid white picket fences pretending to be all prim and proper and focusing on the bloody "adult problems" they love talking about which must somehow make them feel like they're adulating properly. It's backwards. It's not what we were born to do. Its counterproductive. Actually yes you can achieve amazing things and still play just as children play. In fact you are MORE LIKELY to achieve amazing things by doing so.

Playing triggers the release of endorphins, the body's natural feel good chemicals which as we all know creates an over-all sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain and improve brain function. people that play don't experience less stressful things, they just perceive them and handle them differently.

Why?

  • Play generates optimism, makes perseverance fun and leads to mastery.
  • Play fosters empathy
  • Play refreshes long-term adult relationships
  • Play is fun, it can be hilarious which is refreshing, and creates the capacity to share a lighthearted sense of the worlds ironies

Some of my personal favourite play things are:

1. Finger Painting

2. Paint fights during said finger painting

3. Dancing in shopping centres

4. Playing practical jokes on people

5. Morning Kareoke in the office

6. Chasing butterflies

7. Playing with my dogs as if I too were a dog

8. Going to the bounce centre and pretending I can fly

9. Laughing and making fun of my own "failures"

10. Being the most hilarious person I know and laughing at my own jokes

 

Originally published on HannahDalby.com


 


If you don't do the work to keep moving up, you're doomed to go downhill.

-Geoffrey James

If there's anything that's true in business and in life, it's change. And change means that each element of your business and your life is either improving or deteriorating. Because nothing ever stays the same.

Take your health, for instance. Depending upon the choices you made during the day, your body is either stronger than it was yesterday or it's weaker. You've either extended your life or accelerated your demise. There's no in-between.

Similarly, depending upon the actions you took during the day, you have either grown your company's revenue, profit, and potential or you've shrunk them. There's no in-between.

A couple of days in a downward direction won't kill you or your business. However, it's extremely easy to build momentum when you're headed downhill. Building upward momentum is more difficult. It requires constant effort.

Here's how you build upward momentum:

  1. Make a list of at least six areas of your life and work that are important to you.
  2. Resolve to take at least one action, every day, to improve that area of your life.
  3. Schedule those actions into your daily routine.
  4. Execute on your plan.

For example, here's my list from a few years back:

(The orange points in the list are Hannah's current list for a Savage Example )

  • Sales. Call or email at least one prospective client.
  • Sales. CALL at least one prospective client. Consultants that get on the phone always win over the ones that email all day
  • Health. Do at least 15 minutes of aerobic exercise.
  • Health. Do at least an hour of exercise I LOVE doing
  • Family. Make at least one person in my family feel incredibly loved.
  • Family. Message, email, call, snapchat, message, visit, as many family members as possible
  • Networking. Call or email at least one business contact.
  • Networking. CALL at least one business contact. See above point on calling. 
  • Financing. Take at least one action that give me more control over my finances.
  • Financing. Check in with finance manager on activities daily. I am not a finance genius. I should not be in charge or in control of this. 
  • Creativity. Do at least one creative activity that's not business writing.
  • Creativity. Spend an hour every day doing creative things. Finger painting, turning mango's into men, making gifts for friends and family. 

What I've discovered is that acting upon those resolutions, day after day, week after week, create upward momentum in the areas of my life that previously had a tendency to get shoved aside and therefore go downhill.

What I also discovered is that, because these small actions ensured that I would give attention to these areas of my life, I usually found myself doing more than the minimum that I resolved to do.

Just as important, knowing that I was address these otherwise-neglected areas freed me from the burden of worrying about them when I was hard at work.  That allowed me to get more done in less time.

Try this method for a week.  Once you feel the upward momentum, you won't want to stop.

Note from Hannah: Once you have the upward momentum, your life will amaze you every day, and it will be almost impossible to stop unless you consciously make the decision to stop. 

Originally published on Inc

business-growth-beaudesert

-Amy Morin

The ancient Greeks recognized the connection between the mind and the body. It's taken a long time for Western medicine to adopt this notion, yet science continues to prove—over and over again—that there's a strong link between our physical health and our mental health.

If you're feeling down and you don't know why, or if you're worried about your financial situation, "positive thinking" might not be the solution. Sometimes, the best treatment involves doing something different with your body, not just your mind.

As a psychotherapist, I'm fortunate to work in a comprehensive health clinic that provides everything from dental care to podiatry. Working with physicians to treat the entire person is instrumental in addressing patients' overall health and well-being.

If you're struggling with psychological distress, there are many ways to treat the problem. Here are five simple ways you can use your body to heal your mind:

1. Walk to reduce depression

Multiple studies show physical activity can be an effective treatment for mental health problems—and you don't have to do intense cardio to reap the benefits. Studies(link is external) show that 200 minutes of walking per week (less than 30 minutes per day) greatly reduces depression and improves quality of life. In fact, some studies show walking can be just as effective as taking an antidepressant.

But it's not only people with depression who can experience the mental health benefits of walking. Taking regular walks boosts emotional health for people who aren't depressed as well.

2. Smile to decrease physical pain.

Researchers have discovered there's some truth behind the old saying, "Grin and bear it." If you're in pain, smiling can help you feel the discomfort less intensely. Frowning, on the other hand, can intensify your pain.

Studies(link is external) show how smiling influences your physical state: A smile can decrease your heart rate during a stressful activity, even if you don't feel happy. So the next time you're about to undergo a painful procedure, think about your "happy place," or a funny joke, and it might not hurt as much.

3. Take deep breaths to improve attention span.

A few minutes of deep breathing can improve your concentration, and counting those breaths can be especially beneficial if you're a heavy multitasker.

Studies(link is external) show that people who multitask have trouble taking tests and performing activities that require sustained concentration. Taking a few deep breaths can provide an immediate boost in focus, which can improve performance.

4. Do yoga to reduce stress and the symptoms of PTSD.

Almost anyone who enjoys yoga likely already knows that it can reduce stress. Research shows how yoga increases the level of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)—a neurotransmitter—in the brain. And increased GABA levels may counteract anxiety and other psychiatric conditions.

Studies(link is external) have also found yoga benefits people with post-traumatic stress disorder(PTSD). When compared to a control group, people treated with trauma-informed yoga classes show a significant decrease in PTSD symptoms.

5. Lift weights to combat anxiety.

About 15 percent of the population reports frequent bouts of anxiety, which can typically last for 15 to 30 days per month with symptoms including nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worry. Without intervention, anxiety can lead to poor sleep, aches and pains, poor health, and physical limitations.

Studies(link is external) show that weightlifting is a meaningful intervention for anxiety. Perhaps the best news is that you don't have to do high-intensity weight lifting to reap the benefits. Studies show that moderate-intensity resistance training is more effective at reducing anxiety than high-intensity resistance training.

Build Mental Muscle

Building mental strength isn't just about changing the way you think. Sometimes, a few simple changes to your physical routine can be instrumental in training your brain and healing your mind.

Originally published on Psychology Today


Leaders come in different forms, from parents and mentors to sports coaches and authors. Everyone is a leader in their own way, despite the fact that, for some, it's not always a conscious choice.

In a 2017 presentation at Berkeley College, Jodi Grinwald, a CPC and certified master practitioner of the Energy Leadership Index™, defined a leader as anyone who interacts with others.

Energy Leadership™ is a discipline that develops one's personal influence style so that it positively impacts the manager and, in turn, those around him or her.

'When practiced with intention, this process can drastically improve your personal and professional relationships, which, in turn, can transform your business.'

To be an effective leader, the first step involves familiarizing yourself with the principles of Energy Leadership™ and its seven levels of leadership, said Grinwald

"Determine which … level is yours, and [whether] it's a negative one. Having that sense of understanding is the first step toward making a positive change," she said.

Level 1

These leaders are critically self-aware but fail to take action. Level one leaders typically have low self-esteem, work in crisis mode and lack productivity.

"Some leaders have little to no passion or commitment to their company's mission," said Grinwald. "They may not remember it because they are (usually) reacting to crises, and they don't have a real plan for where they are going. Their communication skills are poor to nonexistent, as is their ability to truly inspire and motivate others."

Core emotions: Guilt, self-doubt, hopelessness, fear, worry, depression.

Level 2

For these leaders, actions and results come from a place of anger and defiance. The focus is on others, stress, disappointment, resistance, struggle, control and entitlement.

Often interactions with these types of leaders feel like a zero-sum game, in which their world is made up of winners (them) and losers (everyone else). It's not uncommon for Level 2 leaders to be micromanagers.

Core emotions: anger, resentment, hatred, blame, greed, discord, pride.

Level 3

It is at this level that there is a distinctive shift between fear (Level 1) and negative energy (Level 2) to positive energy and a willingness to accept responsibility for one's actions.

Level 3's thoughts are positive, and their emotions come from a place of forgiveness. Actions and results may include rationalization, justification, tolerance and coping.

Core emotions: relief, peace of mind.

Level 4

This leader's focus is on their team. They genuinely care about others, and they don't take anything personally. Instead, they are able to view circumstances and people objectively. They are playful, generous, supporting, helpful and self-caring.

Grinwald noted that this kind of leader performs best in human resources, customer service and sales because of their exceptional people skills.

Core emotions: compassion, love, gratitude.

Level 5

Leaders who operate at a Level 5 live to the fullest and don't let the past get in the way. They are open-minded and focus on the organization as a whole rather than just themselves.

Often, when faced with a challenge or threat, these leaders view them as an opportunity for growth and development. Further, these individuals don't try to change differences in others, but instead focus on accepting and reconciling differences.

Core emotions: peace.

Level 6

These leaders are driven by their intuition, and they are often creative geniuses and visionaries. Individuals at this level of leadership see others around them as an extension of themselves, which fosters an attitude of empowerment and achievement among team members.

"With Level 6 leaders, everyone always wins," said Grinwald. "These leaders are brilliant and conscious leaders."

Core emotions: joy.

Level 7

The seventh and highest level is often the hardest to achieve, and few people have ever experienced it. It's characterized by a complete lack of blame, shaming and fear of failure.

Level 7's feel don't make any judgments and, unlike Level 2 leaders, feel that winning and losing are illusions. They're fearless, and they create and observe at the same time.

Core emotions: passion.

Ultimately, said Grinwald, when you are more aware of your leadership style and the impact it has on your employees and co-workers, you can study the other leadership styles and work toward being the type of leader you want to be.

For more information on Energy Leadership™, check out Bruce Schneider's book, which introduces and explains the concept.

Originally published on business news daily