Guest Post: Using Good Jealousy And Overcoming Useless Jealousy


When you see someone doing better than you in terms of success in one field, or skills in another, how do you respond to seeing that? There are ways to respond that are healthy/beneficial for you, and other ways that are appealing as instant responses, but which leave you unable to even compete with them.

How Do You View What Others Have?

If you find that your friend owns a large house in a desirable area, does your mind first respond by thinking negatively of them, being jealous of what they have, and allowing it to anger you and stop your activity for a period of time until your regroup? It is clear to see from the current structure of society that most folks respond in this unproductive way.

Does Seeing Success Cause You To Take Action?

On the other end of the response spectrum is the very healthy response, where you think to yourself, “what can I do to get what this person has?”. This is the pro-active way to go, and accepts the fact that you have just as much potential to gain as the person did to get that big house.

If It Challenges You Productively, It Is Good For You

I would call this a good form of jealousy, in that it doesn’t contain the view that someone else is lucky, which they are not, or evil, which they are not, but that they put out effort to get something or build up a skill, and you can do the same. This is empowering because suddenly all the things around you are attainable when you have this perspective. There aren’t people keeping you down, but instead, people representing an example of what it takes to get there. Use the examples that you see and toss off any of the anger directed towards them.

See The Errors Of Others And Learn From Them

To supplement the point, it is good to look at others around you who do talk in a jealous way, and to see how it affects their ability to produce or bring about effects. You will notice that their jealousy leaves them unable to do well, because their mind is in the mode that they are already out of the running, and the opportunity was given to someone other than themselves. It’s always good to learn from others around you, so as not to fall into the same bad habits that they would rather not have either.

Armen Shirvanian writes for the site Timeless Information on topics including mindset development, social interaction, communication, and competition. He has also created a compilation eBook that has thorough discussion about 11 valuable quotations. You can check out his articles and eBook

How to Find Your Dream Job

One of the greatest joys I’ve had the good fortune to experience in the last year is finding my dream job, managing the social media efforts for Flightster. But today I want to focus on how you can find yours.

3 Essential Things You Need to Understand

1. Your Resume Will Never Get You You  Dream Job:

This might be a tough one to swallow for many of you but it’s time you accept it. Your resume is just far too limiting a view into how complex and interesting you are as a person. Thus it will never lead you that dream job because you are more than bullets on a page. But don’t take my word for it. Seth Godin even mentioned it in his recent post about what your platform is. A blog or an active twitter presence can help you to express who you are on much a deeper level than a resume ever will.

2. Find that Company That Lets You Be You

There’s really no set formula for this. But, I’d say this comes down to not being desperate and being relentless when it comes to getting what you want in a job.  The other day I was telling a friend that I think I could go to a school and tell students that I was going to make them a job offer for 90K a year working at a large well known company, but I couldn’t tell them what the job was. Sadly, I think there are a good amount of people who would take the job without questioning what the job was, which takes me to what the real key to finding your dream job.

3. What’s the Thing You Value Most in a Job?

Last week when I wrote about conflicting values, I made brief mention of the fact that happiness is very closely tied to values. I go through Tony Robbins Personal Power II program every 3-4 months as a refresher and reminder.

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The other day, I got to the tape on values and when I asked myself the question “what’s most important to me in a job?” the answer I came up with was creativity. In that moment it became immediately apparent to me why I had never been very good at any of my previous jobs. The jobs completely conflicted with the most important thing I was looking for in a job. Working as an account manager (essentially a sales job) provided minimal opportunities for creative expression. As a result I was completely bored in every job I’ve had up until now. In that moment I started to realize the tremendous importance of value based career choices, something the education system does little to address.

If you ask the overwhelming majority of students in graduate programs or possibly even undergraduate programs what they are looking for in a job, you’ll get some variation on the following answers:

  • A good company
  • A good salary/paycheck
  • An opportunity for growth
  • A good brand name

When you look closely, it becomes very clear why so many people hate their jobs. They don’t chose those jobs based on their values. I think that we need a serious paradigm shift in the way we prepare students and everybody else for the future. I think we need to start taking our values much more seriously if we intend to reach our potential.

The “I’ll take what I can get” mindset is detrimental not only to individuals but to our society. Give some thought to why you do what you do and whether it actually aligns with your values. Simply ask yourself “what’s most important to me in a job?” I think you’ll find the experience to be an eye-opening one and it will take you much close to landing your dream job.

4 Ideas on Rethinking the Way We Work

Creative Commons License Photo Credit: katiew via Compfight

I’ve heard many people complain over the last year that millennials are lazy and they don’t want to work. As I’m looking around I’m seeing a growing trend of self employment or people beginning the path to self employment. After years of buying into the myths that help corporate America to fuel its own existence, people are finally waking up to the fact that they’ve got an opportunity for something far better than a cubicle farm, higher paycheck and a better job title. People are finding ways to redefine and rethink the way we work more than anytime in history. As my friend Greg Hartle says we’ve entered a creative economy.

To tell you the truth, I was never interested in a nine to five kind of setting. I felt claustrophobic in my cubicle. I would wait for time to go by and rush out of the place. I was doing exceedingly well there and drawing a good sum but the fact was that I was not creatively challenged enough and that was one reason I never felt home there. Then a great site happened called the Bitcoin Loophole and the rest, as they say, is history, check out

1. Stop Waiting for the Economy to Improve

I’m always a bit puzzled by people who talk about the economy improving as if a day is coming when dream jobs will be falling out of the sky. Our economic climate changed forever four years ago.  Rather than forcing square pegs into round holes, it might be be time to start adjusting to the conditions and ride the wave in the direction it’s taking us.  That might mean something different to everybody depending on where you’re at in your life and your career.

  • It could mean selling everything you own and leaving the country.
  • It could mean it’s time to make the career change you’ve always wanted to.
  • It could mean finding a passion that lights your eyes up so you don’t sink into depression during an extended employment search.

As I’ve said it’s up to you to determine your own signs of a meaningful life.

2. Creativity Dies In the Confines of Cubicles

A while back I said the 8 hour work day doesn’t make sense. It went viral and it pissed off lots of people. Somehow that’s normally the case when you write anything that becomes wildly popular. My issue isn’t with the number of hours, but the structure of a typical work day. I’ve yet to read a book on creativity and productivity that said any of the following

  • The way to come up with your best ideas and do your best work is to sit in front of a computer for 8-10 hours a day.  
  • When you need a break, attend a pointless meeting where you’ll talk about ideas that never get executed. 
  • When you get really bored, take a piss, get a drink of water, go to the water cooler, or go to lunch
  • After it’s all said and done, go sit in traffic and curse the other drivers.

Yet, if you look at most of the corporate world this is actually how work is structured. When I recently interviewed for a position that resulted in an article titled the 5 warning signs of a job you’ll hate, I was amazed at how malignant the office environment was.  Everybody there seemed like zombies sleepwalking through the world. Not surprisingly my suspicions were confirmed by the reviews of employees on

3. Values Are Changing

A few weeks ago I was speaking with a consultant about leadership development within organizations. She had mentioned that one of the trends that employers really need to become aware of is the value shift of gen-Y. Prestigious job titles, extra bullets on the resume, and the prospect of a higher paycheck no longer have the appeal they once did.  What people are really after is meaning and purpose in their work.  When I look back at many of my previous jobs, I realize that there was really no meaning or purpose in the work I did.  I didn’t see the impact.

4. Performance Improvement Plans Don’t Work

If you read the book The Three Laws of Performance you’ll stumble upon on a really interesting insight about performance improvement plans.  They don’t work very well if at all.   But this is not something isolated the work force. It goes as far back as grade school. Let’s say you start getting bad grades in math, but are a brilliant artist. The teacher sends a note home to your parents saying that you’re not doing well in math. So now you focus on fixing something you suck at, completely oblivious to the fact that what you focus on grows.  When we start any performance improvement plan, it begins with a context. The context is that you suck at something.  Within that context limitation of what’s possible is built in. Rather the focus on fixing what somebody is awful at, why not work on amplifying what they’re amazing at?

To get the most out of a work force, we’ll need to give a bit more thought to what their long term goals are. We’ll need to start rethinking the way we work. They days of building an entire career inside the walls of one company are over.

Overcoming the Fear of Listening to Your Heart and Chasing Dreams

What happens when you follow your heart, your dreams or your passion and find that you are second guessing yourself and starting to think that perhaps it wasn’t the right decision or even the best idea?The main aspect to worry will be dread itself. In any case, you are aware there is a certain thing inside you that is greater than where you exist, your desk area, your home, your office. You realize your thought is great. Yet, you can’t assemble the mettle to pursue the fantasy and check this hyperlink. That maybe when everyone said you were crazy or doing it for the wrong reasons or naive to think it would work, you start to think that maybe, just maybe they had a point.

I remember when my family kept asking me “what if it isn’t what you expect?” My response every time, “I don’t have any expectations. I am going to go, work a school year and see where it takes me.” Even though I said that about 500 times between the months of May and August, I secretly remember thinking, if all else fails, at least I have the beach to throw my thoughts onto.

Nothing else was predicted, hoped for or even planned. I just remember being so sure that this was something I had to do. When the opportunity came to me, there was absolutely no way I was going to turn it down. I don’t ignore things like this. When someone offers for me things like live in a new culture, go skydiving, drive a 1960 Opel (unaware of how to actually drive stick) or hit a strip club in Mexico  – I say yes, it’s just the kind of person I am. Mostly I just want to satisfy my curiosity.

I had a job lined up and apartment waiting for me when I arrived to Costa Rica. I considered that a huge one up on most spontaneous decisions. When I traveled through Australia, I met people who came on a whim, living in hostels and drinking wine out of a box at the communal kitchen every night. They had no plan for where they were going to be the next day, week or month from then. I actually had a place that I was expected to be at everyday and was fortunate enough to meet someone through facebook (thanks to my sister!) before I had even stepped foot in Costa Rica.  Since then, it has been a rollercoaster ride of self realization and zero regret, but not without a few bumps in the dirt road.

I am going to be completely honest and tell you that this entire time here has not always consisted of the easiest or the happiest moments of my life. Finally, after 9 months, 3 weeks and 5 days since I uttered my first “como se llama”, I can look back and say that it was about 6 weeks ago when I started to feel like I belong where I am and I don’t need to get the hell out of here once school ends. I don’t need to look at people with flames bursting out of my ears when they tell me that I am living in paradise anymore.

When I first got to Costa Rica, I was thrown into a situation at work that was unbearable for me. The children didn’t speak English and didn’t know anything past “hola” and “adios”. I was living out of a suitcase and a carry on in an apartment with ants that would make their way into my bed which was planted wall to wall in my studio apartment. I had landed in Costa Rica right in the middle of their rainy season, fell in love the moment I walked off the plane and was planted into someone’s life as the new girlfriend who was learning Spanish but didn’t know s**t. Living in a town where people come to visit, but not many who take the plunge and live year-round in and to top it all off I had royally pissed off pretty much everyone in my family. To say the least, it was impossible to get anywhere near the word comfortable right away.

Being here was not easy for a really long time. Sometimes it’s hard to recognize unhappiness until you are content enough to look back and realize that wasn’t a reflection of enjoyment or pleasure, it was a reflection of survival.

My life was not horrible for the first 6 months here, but there definitely weren’t stars of appreciation shining in my eyes when people would tell me that I am living in paradise while they ordered another beer and heading out to the nightclub on a Tuesday night. I would think, yeah right! You’re the one on vacation. I have to get up at 6am and make my way through a day of astounding disorganization and then come home to boredom hoping that I could be entertained by the 3 channels of English on tv and a bag of Doritos, the closest thing I had to remind me of home and the most exciting thing for me to do at the time.

It is hard to explain, but taking yourself away from all the stimulations and conveniences of a place like NYC and moving to a place where my only way out is on a bus that doesn’t have a schedule of arrival or departure, is a real adjustment. I don’t think there is more of a polar opposite. With that being said, I would not have traded this experience for anything.

About 6 months in, I didn’t want to leave Costa Rica, but I needed something to fulfill the need of desire. Work wasn’t enough of a distracter anymore and the weekends became time spent alone. I had read all of my books twice, written pages of poetry and got sick of looking at my email inbox. I started to realize that sitting in my apartment feeling like I wanted to go out on the porch and scream at the top of my lungs just to see what would happen did nothing for me. Talking my sister’s ear off about all of my plans for my return did nothing for me. Sitting on the beach only led my mind to thinking about what I could do once I left because there is no way I can sit here for another 5 minutes without a book, someone to talk to or something! One very important thing I learned from being in a place that doesn’t offer me much more than a job, a beach and people is that I need to search deep inside myself for those things that challenge and excite me.  I don’t own a car, so I literally was stuck.

It’s really hard to explain, but something inside me clicked and my life here has become enjoyable in a lot of ways. I made an effort to meet people who had just moved here or who have been living here that I didn’t know very well.

I decided to go back to surfing. I started with learning how to surf, to adjusting to it, to fighting with it on a weekly basis to finally, now, being in love with it. To be able to look back and see the sunset falling into the ocean while pushing my way to the top of a wave has become a new form of enlightenment for me. That alone makes me want to extend my life here.

  • Finally, finally, finally I am able to engage in conversations in Spanish and do not feel like a complete idiot when someone addresses me without prior knowledge of the conversation.
  • I come home from school and exercise, write, listen to music or read. I make plans with people to see other parts of this beautiful country.
  • I consciously feel thankful every day.
  • It actually was a really great experience to look at my raw self and decide what I really want. What makes me want to wake up in the morning if there aren’t any stores, games, movies, books, universities, family, best friends, gardens, or a favorite restaurant in town? It was a really interesting learning experience for me to literally be in a place with just myself and nothing else.

In the end, I think it is extremely important for us to make sure that when our hearts call on us to fulfill a dream or a want or a curious notion, we need to go for it and not be discouraged it if doesn’t turn out exactly as needed at exactly the time that we do it. There is a reason your heart tells you what it wants. If you are smart you will listen, if you are even smarter, you will wait it out to see what that reason was.

My name is Julia and I decided last year to move to Costa Rica after an opportunity to teach was offered to me. I am learning all about Costa Rican culture, the Spanish language and more about myself than I ever imagined – another lesson learned to follow my heart and go with my instinct.

Don’t Compare Your Insides to Somebody Else’s Outsides

Circular Polarisation difference
Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Niek Beck via Compfight

I seem to be finding most of my inspiration for blog posts in conversations with other people lately. Thank you Jennifer Boykin for this brilliant pearl of wisdom and a dozen others that  I’ll get to share with the world in a few weeks.

A while back I wrote about the comparative and competitive disadvantage. It’s one of those things you definitely don’t learn in school since our comparison starts in the form of grades, smart kids, and dumb kids at a very early age.  Well we know there are no grades in the school of life.  But the strange thing is we don’t really act like it. All we do is replace grades with other labels like degrees from prestigious universities, job titles, bank balances,  and addresses (especially if you live in NYC).

The Ego Driven Pursuit of a Life that Looks Good on Facebook

With the rise of lifestyle design bloggers, people selling everything they own and leaving the country, and people living lives that seem more exciting than our own, perhaps it’s true that Facebook is making us miserable.

  • You’re not making a six figure income from your muse
  • Publishers aren’t knocking on your door with your book deal 
  • You’re not sipping cocktails in some exotic destination in pursuit of world domination and living life on your own terms. 

Guess what. It’s ok. You don’t need any of those things. Part of me can’t help but think all we’ve really done is move from the ego driven pursuit of a life that looks good on paper to one that looks good on Facebook. It’s great to let somebody else’s story inspire you, but remember it’s up to you to decide on the signs of a meaningful life.

Comparison Keeps  Us Stuck Where We’re At

When we get caught up in comparing ourselves to the people around us we get stuck. If you keep comparing where you thought you’d be with where you are, you’ll never become the person you were meant to be. Comparison is a form of resistance and a waste of your glorious energy on your planet.  I’ve wasted plenty of my own glorious energy comparing myself to my friends, my sister, and other entrepreneurs. It hasn’t done a damn thing for me.

You Might Be Idealizing The Life That You Think You Want

A few months ago I was hanging out with my friend Colin Wright who lives a rather interesting life. Every 3 months he moves to a different country and allows the readers of his blog to vote where he should move next. One of the things that came up was just how much people idealize his life I said to him “everybody thinks they want your life” and he replied ” they don’t. They just want the good parts.”

True personality is a layer within an individual, the qualities the words and the attitude reflects the kind of person you are, which nears a stamp about your traits on the others. It an important link to understanding what you are inside, as gets reflected on the people and business you carry on.

One of my friends will comment on my pictures on Facebook or status updates from time to time when I’m out at the beach or in the mountains snowboarding and say “I wish I had your life.” But the funny thing is he’s only seeing one side of it. He’s completely forgetting about the three years of work that have gone into what I’ve done, the sacrifice in quality of life I’ve made to have my freedom, and uncertainty that comes with taking the scenic route through life.  He only wants part of my life, not the whole thing.

When I sold everything I owned last year for my Costa Rican surf sabbatical, I thought life was going to be nothing but riding waves and sipping cocktails on the beach all day. But I got a harsh glimpse of reality during my first two weeks as a digital nomad. It wasn’t perfect and I realized that living the dream is not for everybody, possibly even me.

My friend Bud wrote a very thought provoking post awhile back about why you don’t need to quit your job to change the world and I have to admit I’ve played my part in perpetuating the idea that you do. The truth is I’m not opposed to jobs, just ones that you hate. I had everything I wanted, a job that I loved, the ability to surf everyday and I already was living in paradise. (at least I think it’s paradise despite the traffic and overpriced housing). The surf sabbatical made me realize I might just be happier traveling for 6 weeks at a time rather than 6 months at a time.

That of course doesn’t mean you should stop the pursuit of your crazy wild eyed dreams.  If anything it relieves the pressure to follow the herd.

Don’t get too caught up in the success of other people because it might have you chasing dreams that weren’t even yours to begin with. 

About + Contact

Brand Visualization: Courtesy of Ameena Falchetto

I believe there are things you should have learned in school but never did. In April 2009, I completed my MBA at Pepperdine University. After two degrees, 10 years of work experience,  and a series of failed relationships I never felt more unprepared for life. A few weeks later my bank balance literally hit zero and I moved back to my parents house.

Sometimes, all you need to do is to wait and let the universe give you an answer. I have been there and I know how it feels. It makes no sense to even read pages on the internet telling you that your time is yet to come. But what else can you even do? I began online trading not just to kill time but to make some profit. And before I knew it I got sucked into this. I wanted to be able to code software myself. I could do it and that is what they say about the universe tipping you up. Hop over to these guys and see what is in store for you

It seemed like I was right back where I started at the age of 18 when I went off to UC-Berkeley for my first degree.  That summer I became obsessed with surfing because I needed a way to escape how bad my life had become. That was the start of an incredible journey of riding waves, building a media empire, and sharing my ideas with the world. I became a student of The Skool of Life.



The Class Rules

If you feel like school didn’t prepare you for life you’re not alone. These are the class rules and what I stand for. If you’re wondering if The Skool of Life  is right for you, look no further than this list.

1. You Don’t Need to Raise Your Hand or Ask for Permission to Speak

As far back as I can remember you had to ask for permission to take a piss, speak or do just about anything. Unfortunately we start to live our whole lives through the lens of asking for permission, which limits what’s possible. If you have a burning desire to change the world or make a dent in the universe, stop waiting for permission to be extraordinary.It’s not required here at the Skool of Life.

2. Feel Free to Color Outside the Lines

Weird is the new cool and I’m a big supporter of non-conformity here at The Skool of Life. So if you want to color outside the lines, go for it. In fact it’s highly encouraged.

3. There’s a Difference Between Getting an Education and Learning Something

True learning isn’t about the pieces of paper on your wall or the numbers of letters on the end of your name. It’s about the genuine desire to satisfy whatever it is you’re curious about.  Fortunately we’ve enter an age in which you  can give yourself an education that kicks the crap out of the one you got in school.

4. There are no grades, final exams, or required reading

I only got good grades until college. Then I went from being a straight A-student to an extremely average student. I started to believe that my grades were going to determine how far I could go in life, until I realized there are no grades in the school of life. Just because you try something once, twice or even a dozen times, it doesn’t mean your fate is sealed. There are no final exams. The only reading list you’ll find here is Un-Required reading for the School of Life. In other words it’s optional and you can even modify it for your own needs.

5. Challenge the Status Quo

I encourage you to question things you’ve been taught. Blindly following tradition hinders the progress of humanity. Try things you’ve never tried. If you have a better way to do something do it. Progress rarely occurs in the confines of your comfort zone.

6. Conventional Wisdom Yields Conventional Results

“Never trust the mountain of conventional wisdom. It contains nuggets it is true. But they lie along rivers of fool’s gold. Conventional wisdom daunts initiative and offers far too man convenient reasons for inaction, especially for those with a great deal to lose.”  – Felix Dennis, Founder of Dennis Publishing

Conventional wisdom says if you go to school, get good grades, graduate at the top of your class, you’ll be able to get your dream job, buy a house with a white picket fence, and be happy. It’s a once size fits all solution when there are no two people on the planet who are exactly the same.  Conventional wisdom yields conventional results. I encourage you to challenge it and when appropriate completely ignore it.

7. Trust Your Instincts

If something doesn’t feel good,  don’t do it. If you’ve made it this far down the list and doesn’t feel good, shut your browser window down and leave. I’m dead serious. As Oprah Winfrey said “your feelings are a GPS system for life.”

8. Class is Always in Session

In the words of Zig Ziglar “You can finish school but you never finish your education.”

If you want to push the limits of what’s possible regardless of what your life is like at the moment or how well you did in school, you’re in the right place. I think we’re all capable of making the honor roll in the school of life.

Not feeling it? Did school do exactly what it was supposed to for you? No worries. You’re free to ditch class anytime you want. If you decide to come back, the door is always open.


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Don’t get Caught up in the Ego-Driven Pursuit of a Life that Looks Good on Paper

A few days ago I was with a friend and we were talking about jobs and he mentioned the idea of wanting a job that “looks good on paper.” It got me thinking about how much time I’ve spent pursuing a life that “looks good on paper.”

A Life that Looks Good on Paper

A few weeks back I talked briefly about why nobody can tell you what path to chose. Unfortunately as a society we actually encourage pursuit of a life that looks good on paper. I come from a community that drills this into your head from the time you are old enough to start thinking about school. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me to find a second grader who is making plans to go to Harvard.  Here’s a broad strokes view of this path:

  1. Attend Berkeley, Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, insert top 20 school of your choice
  2. Get your first job at a consulting firm, investment bank,  insert prestigious first job or go to top grad school, med school or law school
  3. Work for a few years and return to top school of your choice
  4. Return to the working world for a more prestigious job

I got the first step of this right and then I f#$#d the rest of it up completely. I didn’t manage to get a prestigious job out of college. I also ended up at  a second tier grad school. If people ask what I do for a living, it sounds like I have a job that’s kind of “made up”. The funny thing is that I’m finally feeling like I’m succeeding and doing well in my job. Sometime ago I gave up the pursuit of what looks good on paper. I came to the realization that there is tremendous power in creating your own definitions for success and failure.

The Life That Actually is Good

For many people, a tanking economy has made them realize that they’ve hated what they were doing and they have started to create a life of their dreams.  For others, they are basically eager to get back on the path of a life that looks good on paper by submitting resumes and trying to get their foot in the door at some big name company so they can continue their climb up the corporate ladder.

Ego Driven Pursuits of Impressive Credentials:

When I look back at why I wanted that life that looks good on paper it was largely driven by my ego. I was a complete victim of the comparative and competitive disadvantage. The average person in my circle of friends is a doctor, lawyer or graduate of a top business school. All of these are “prestigious” accomplishments and I felt like I needed these. Alas, I will never be any of these things because this is all in the past. My best bet is to focus on today.

The degrees and the certificates you have may become useless if you are caught up with the ego that could harm your professional and personal life. The one life to live and love will be useless if we do not address the need to generate income from the and be aware of frauds.

When I look at the life I lead, I realize that if I had the life that looks good on paper, this is actually what it would look like:

  • Work 80+ hours a week
  • Take a vacation once  a year
  • Have lots of money that I never get to enjoy
  • Keep thinking about the fact that I hate what I do

In comparison, this is what it actually looks like

  • Surf Everyday
  • Do work that I enjoy so much that I don’t even think in terms of time
  • Have plenty of money and numerous opportunities to grow my income
  • Keep thinking to myself  “I can’t believe this is my life, it’s awesome.”

Rewarding Conformity

For a long time we’ve rewarded people for fitting in and this really is the gist of what Seth Godin talks about in his most recent book, Linchpin. The people who got ahead were the ones who showed up, didn’t challenge the status quo, and did their best to fit the company mold. We rewarded people more for effort than we did for results. Personally I think if you work 80 hours a week and don’t accomplish anything you’re not a hard worker, you suck at managing time.  Today we’ve finally stopped doing that and the people who’ve spent their life trying to fit in are faced with one of their greatest challenges, thinking for themselves.

The Best Time In History

For those of us who struggled to fit in, struggled to keep up, and always felt that our calling was something different, our time has come. All of the limitations of technical knowledge, access to information and more are on the verge of being completely wiped out. The fu#$#ups, misfits, and troublemakers,  are some of the most successful people around. I’ll leave you with one final thought. Before you pursue a life that looks good on paper, make sure you know what it’s actually going to look like in the physical world. Be careful that you haven’t bought into an ego driven illusion that has been programmed into your mind.

5 Warning Signs That You’re About End Up in a Job You’ll Hate

Maybe it’s because I dealt with IBS, ADHD, and uphill career battles for such a long time. Perhaps it’s because in the past when I didn’t it end up coming back to bite me in the ass. These days I just tend to trust my gut instinct far more than ever before. The other morning I was in a second round interview for what I thought could very well put an end to the search for my social media dream job.  I didn’t mind the potential 13 hour work days. I didn’t mind what would be an extensive amount of travel. I didn’t mind the fact that I would probably be a one-man band expected to produce like a grammy winner. Those things didn’t bother me in the least.

It’s not the first time that I am here. I have had this suffocating feeling more times than you think anyone normally would. It is not just butterflies in the stomach but a conviction that I am in the wrong place. So, what did I try to overcome this? I suggest you try this website which talks about online trading. I realize that I have social anxiety and that I did very well on the trading bit only because I did not have to deal with anyone personally. My favorite software is crypto code but you check and take a call

But about 30 minutes into it I was overcome with a very familiar uncomfortable feeling. “I don’t fit in here and I get the sense I’d be setting up myself to fail if I took this job. Every time I’ve felt this way in the past, I nearly ended up getting fried from my job.” As I heard words and phrases such as “casual friday”  and “if we say 8:00, we don’t mean 8:15” I couldn’t help but start to feel imprisoned and feel that my creative abilities which peaked their interest in the first place would be stifled by forcing square pegs into round holes. It seemed clear to me that one of the guys in the room had already made up his mind about me and if I did get an offer I’d be facing an uphill battle from the day I started.

Your Gut Instinct is Usually Spot On

Rather than listen to our own voice, we tend to listen to the voice of reason or even worse the voice of others. As a result our own voice gets drowned out, and we start putting on a front to gain the approval of others.  While I do think soliciting opinions of people who are credible is worthwhile, I think that the way to end up with the most favorable circumstances in your life is to trust your gut. When you don’t it usually backfires.  This doesn’t just apply to jobs, but to nearly everything in your life.

5 Things That Will Cause You to End Up in a Job You Hate

A while back I wrote a post about why so many people hate their jobs. That post in large part  was about how broken the hiring process is. While I still do think the hiring process is broken, I think that job candidates also tend to play an instrumental role in ending up in jobs they hate. A few months back I was talking to my dad about an upcoming interview and he had some of his own advice to share. It got me thinking about what role we play in ending up in jobs we hate.

1. Act Interested

Without knowing anything about the position I was applying for, my dad said “make sure you act interested.” It got me thinking about just how often people act interested in a position even when they’re not.  A tough job market has caused people to do things they might never do and completely forget about the difference between settling and settling down. This is a recipe for disaster and ultimately your lack of interest will show in the quality of your work. So don’t act interested if you’re truly not.

2. Chase Money

I’d be lying to you if I told you money didn’t matter to me and that it wouldn’t play  any role in a decision I would make about what job to take. But, don’t forget that being a paycheck player can be detrimental to your future. I lost close to 5 years of my life for an extra $5000 a year. That being said, if a position has a salary that would barely enable you to live, then it’s worth the wait for something better.

3. Tell the Interviewer what they Want to Hear

I think that most people are not truly honest during interviews. They prepare scripted answers, rehearse them, and put on act in hopes that the hiring manager will like them.  Even if you do manage to get a job offer under this scenario, the whole thing is a sham. The foundation of your relationship with that person is based on a series of lies. Ultimately there’s no way that’s going to lead you down a successful career path.

4. Desperation

Some people believe desperate times call for desperate measures. I believe that there’s tremendous power in hitting rock bottom. Out of desperation we tend to make extremely poor choices, so choosing a job out of desperation nearly guarantees that you’ll not only hate your job, but probably not be very good at it.  People rarely tend to focus on the creation of value when they are desperate. They are more or less in survival mode, and end up doing just enough to get by.  It’s also likely that if you choose a job out of desperation you’ll be starting the job thinking about when you’ll get to leave it. Take a look back at some of the signs of career success and failure that I learned form my friends job search a year ago.

5. Prestige

I hate to say it, but there are people I know who believe that a big brand name on their resume is the key to their kingdom. I even told a friend once that I could probably go and offer a group of MBA students a job at some big company, tell them the salary, and without even telling them what the position was, most would gladly accept. Of course the joke would be on them because they would get paid 90k a year to clean toilets at Disney, Google or insert big company. These people are completely caught up in the ego-driven pursuit of a life that looks good on paper.

I think that you have to be honest with yourself and with your potential employer if you want to end up with a job that you love and you’ll be good at. If you do any of these 5 things your foundation for the future is essentially a house of cards.  So, before you start preparing for your next interview, give some consideration to how things might turn out if you actually were authentic.

How to use Twitter to Generate Content for Your Blog

Over the last few weeks I’ve really started get a deeper understanding of how to make the best use of twitter. You’ve heard it said over and over that twitter is really about the conversation. Well the basic structure of any conversation is fairly simple. Somebody asks a question and somebody answers.  I decided to see how I might use that structure to generate content after seeing Darren ask people about how to make money blogging. When I saw that I realized twitter is a goldmine for not only creating content, but creating community centric content with an opportunity for you to promote other people. For the purposes of this post I decided to ask people a few different questions and even mentioned that I would be using their responses in an upcoming post.

Twitter Chats:

Before we get into the actual answers that everybody gave me, I want to talk about something that I think every blogger should be participating in, twitter chats. One chat in particular #blogchat, was the inspiration for this post. #Blogchat is run by Mack Collier every Sunday night and one of the most effective tools I’ve found for connecting with people,generating traffic, and getting new followers.While your blog, it is best you keep away all the distractions and worries. If you are worried about making money, then you can trade online to generate that additional income. Go over at this website to know all about making money easily through trading with the help of trading software.

Tips For Early Stage Bloggers:

I decided to ask my twitter followers the question “What are your tips for early stage bloggers?”. As you’ll see here I got a some great advice. What’s even more amazing is that I could probably take each piece of advice and make a blog post out of it.

“@salamicat  My advice to a new blogger? Read and comment on others’ blogs, and MAKE FRIENDS ON  TWITTER”

“@simple_rabbit Don’t be afraid to rethink your blog’s direction & experiment. Few blogs hit stride and take off without evolving and changing.”

@websurgery tip: always have a list of 10 posts to write

@boppenheimchan have fun with it. NEVER neglect the fun :)

The Biggest Mistakes Early Stage Bloggers Have Made:

@SimplyOptimal not having a concise clear consistent content strategy. I think the message was clear but not packaged right in the writing.

@Hessiess posting about wildly unrelated subjects, not putting a link back to twitter or rss on the site.

@CJAnyasor I never knew there were so many people in the world willing to make a difference. So willing to live unconventionally

Other Questions You Could Ask Followers to Generate a very useful post:

  • What is your #1 Traffic Tip for Bloggers
  • What’s your best tip on writing good content?
  • What’s your biggest blogging challenge today?
  • What’s your #tip for Making Money as a Blogger

In the case of this post, I’ve focused specifically on blogging. But we could use the same framework to develop a really great post on anything personal development related as well. The truth is twitter can be a goldmine of content ideas if you understand how to engage with the community.

Anything Worth Doing Requires the Courage to Fail

“A Lifetime of Mediocrity is a High Price to Pay for Your Safety” – Todd Henry

The last few weeks have been a perpetual roller coaster ride through the Skool of Life. There have been days when self doubt has reared its ugly head and I’ve wondered if I really am just chasing dreams and dragging ass through life. It’s been a series of ups and downs:

  • I learned  about my takeoff from flightster
  • I learned that I will speaking at Blogworld LA
  • I’ve been pleasantly surprised by sales of my relationship marketing ebook
  • I’ve been disappointed to find no sales in my inbox or responses to cover letters.
  • I’ve received emails that could be complete game changers for everything I’m working on.

As you go through life you’re going to continually experience circumstances and  run across people that try to take the wind of your sails. They’ll try to force you to put your dreams back in a box as opposed to out in the world where they belong. We tend to get so caught up in what people think of us that it gets in the way of overcoming the fear of who we really are and finding our most magnetic qualities. Fear of what people will say, fear of failure, fear of how life won’t go according to plan, fear of failing to meet our own standards all paralyze us when it comes to leaving our mark on the world. There are few things as rewarding leaving your mark on the world and knowing that you’ve left people better off than when you found them. But, ANYTHING worth doing requires the courage to fail.

Finding the right way to do a business, trade or any new venture requires a lot of hard work. You can find here at, the potential to accept failure and be determined to reach your goals set. The path to be taken is different; however, the result should be focused on the long-term goals that one has to set.

It’s possible I’ll fail. It’s possible that The Skool of Life will never be the bestselling book I dream that it will someday be. It’s possible that BlogcastFM will never turn into the media empire that I want it to so badly be. But the beauty that one simple question that makes a dramatic difference in your life is that it makes a hell of a lot of other things possible too.  While every leap of faith may not pay off, all it takes is one good wave for the world to forget about your failures and shine a light on your success.

My friend who is an amazing singer

The other day I was having lunch with one of my oldest friends, her husband, and her 16 month old son. As we were walking down the Santa Monica Promenade we stopped to listen to a street performer who was an amazing singer. My friend also happens be an incredibly talented singer. I asked her “do you still sing?” She said “in the shower and to my son. Where am I going to go sing as an adult?” For a moment I thought she had a good point. Then it occurred to me that we live in LA, a city where people are continually on the look out for talent, and you have an endless supply of open mic nights at your disposal. So, I told her that she should do go to an open mic night and sing. The funny thing is despite her talent, she was overcome by self doubt.

Even the most talented of people find themselves struggling with the courage to fail. But if we can remember that to our fear of uncertainty there is a flip side, then we tap into how amazing we all really are.  The ability to take risks, shake our wipeouts and move on from them is how can avoid the life of mediocrity that nobody was ever meant to live.

My Friend Who Won’t Push Publish

I have a friend who has setup her blog, and has even done a good amount of writing. She has material ready to go, but her fear of whether or not it’s good enough has kept her from pushing publish.  She’s been waiting for a guarantee and the reality of blazing a trail that puts you on the scenic route through life is that there are no guarantees. The only way to find out is to put your message out into the world. Chances are it won’t resonate with everybody, but it doesn’t have.

You might encounter the darkest of hours. It might be impossible to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but you absolutely have to believe it’s there. Because when you finally do see a light at the end of tunnel you’ll realize that the payoff was worth anything you had to go through. In that moment you’ll realize that to have lived any other way would have been completely insane.

Stop waiting to live the life you were meant to live and remember that time is one thing you can’t create more of.