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Whats-a-Vision-Board

What’s a Vision Board?

What’s a Vision Board?

A Vision Board is used to help you clarify, concentrate and maintain focus on your goals. You create a poster the visually represents your goals and you display it somewhere where you’ll be able to look at it regularly.

How to create an empowering Vision Board:

Vision boards can be digital or printed. You can cut out pictures from magazines or find pictures online. Vision Boards can be neat or messy, framed or stuck on card. It’s really up to you! The only crucial element is to ensure that you look at it regularly.

1. Write down your goals for a specified time period

You could create a list of goals for the next 6 months, the next year, the next 5 years or even the next 10 years. You could even create multiple Vision Boards for multiple time periods. Think about what you want to achieve in the time and set realistic goals. Yes, you do have to be realistic. There’s nothing wrong with dreaming big, but you do have to be able to put steps in place to achieve.

2. Find pictures that represent your goals 

You can find pictures in magazines, online through Google image search, or if you’re talented enough you could even draw your own pictures. The pictures don’t have to correlate directly with your goal, as long as they relate to your goal in a way that is meaningful to you.

3. Assemble the images together

The most popular way to do this is to create a digital or printed collage, but you could also frame your images or put them together in another way that works for you. I created mine digitally and printed it out in A2 size. I used Google image search to find images and placed descriptive text over the top.

4. Display it somewhere that you’ll see regularly

It’s not just enough to make the Vision Board, you also have to work to make your goals a reality! Looking at your Vision Board regularly will help you to stay focused on your goals and keep you on track.

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Gratitude Jar

What’s a Gratitude Jar?

I started a Gratitude Jar at the start of the year as one of my new years resolutions, and it’s one of the best things I have ever done.

All you have to do is take a moment each day to write down something that you are grateful for and put it in a jar. It’s a great exercise, because it forces you to be mindful of the positive things that happen throughout your day.  And when you’re having a particularly bad day, you can have a look at all the positive things that have happened to you.

To make your own Gratitude Jar all you need is:

  • An old jar
  • Scrapes paper to write on
  • Ribbon and a label to decorate (optional)
  • Gratitude

But I don’t have anything to be grateful for!

Really? The simple fact that you’re reading this, means that you either have (or have access to) a computer with internet, which means you have electricity, and you’re probably sitting on a pretty comfy chair too. You can find an almost infinite number of things to be grateful for by focusing on the little things that you usually take for granted. A few examples of some of my own gratitude’s include:

  • Didn’t have to wait in line at the coffee shop! And my soy latte tasted AMAZING!
  • Enjoyed a delicious Eggplant Rollatini for dinner tonight!
  • Relaxing Friday night eating home made popcorn and watching a movie with my husband.

Do you have a gratitude jar? If so, has it had a positive effect on your attitude or outlook on life? Please tell me about it in the comments!

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100 Incredible Things Learned Watching 70 Hours of TED Talks (by Chris Bailey, Lifehack)

Check out this great post over at Lifehack:

My favourite lesson:

12. Success isn’t a destination, it’s a continuous journey that’s made up of eight parts: passion, hard work, focus, pushing yourself and others, having great ideas, making constant improvements, serving others, and persistence.

and also:

14. We don’t feel fear because of a potential loss of income or status, we feel fear because we’re afraid of being judged and ridiculed. Any vision of success has to admitThese great Digital Analogue Converters Best Condenser Mic under $50  really do help you get the best from your music collection and investment in premium headphones what the definition doesn’t include, and what you may be missing out on.

The second comes from one of my favourite TED talks: A Kinder, Gentler Philosophy of Success by philospher Alain de Botton. It offers an interesting perspective on how we view success and failure:

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How to let go of the limiting beliefs that are preventing you from quiting your day job

Quitting your job is SCARY! And there are so many limiting beliefs that keep you chained to your desk (trust me I’ve experienced them all!) but it doesn’t have to be this way! Here are my 5 steps to letting go of the limiting beliefs that are preventing you from quitting your day job:

1. Accept that a 9-5 does NOT give you financial security

You could be fired from your job tomorrow. You employer could go into liquidation. Your entire life could fall apart. I’m not trying to scare you, but the reality is that most people hold onto their 9-5 jobs because they believe that it gives them financial security. But in reality, self employment is going to give you the same amount of financial security (or lack thereof depending on how you want to look at it).

Once you stop believe that you have financial security, you’ll likely start to realise that finances are NOT holding you back, because the fact is that the thing that normally holds people back is fear, which leads us to our next step:

2. Make peace with fear

Fear of the unknown, fear of judgement, fear of failure, fear of complete financial dissolution. I get it, quitting your job is terrifying. So how do you make peace with fear? Well…

3. Accept that you CAN earn an income by yourself (and have fun while you’re doing it!)

From an early age most of us are trained to believe that the only way to earn a living or be a respectable member of society is to be an employee. We’re told that we have to work long hours for minimal reward because that’s just how life works. But it doesn’t have to be that way!

Think about it this way. If a company is paying you money, that means that you are making them a lot more money. They aren’t paying you out of the goodness of their hearts. They invest money in you, and you give them a return on their investment. So if a company is prepared to invest in you, why aren’t you prepared to invest in yourself?

4. Realise that you have marketable skills that you can use to generate an income

If you have a day job, you have skills. You probably underestimate how valuable and knowledgeable your skills really are. Or if you don’t have a day job, maybe you’re an amazing stay-at-home mum with parenting skills that you can use to help others, or maybe you’re a great cook. Stop devaluing yourself and start to realise that you an amazing person with a unique set of skills that only you can offer the world.

Once you let go of your limiting beliefs, you can starting working towards quitting your day job.

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How I escaped the 9-5 and created a life and job I love!

Untitled-43Growing up, my parents were always business owners, and I thought it was awful. They worked 7 days a week so they were hardly ever home and holidays were out of the question. I saw them working so hard and decided I never wanted to be self employed.

Meanwhile, my friend’s parents had conventional 9-5 jobs. They had weekends free and took regular holidays, so as I child, a 9-5 job seemed like a dream come true. Of course, I wasn’t aware of all the negative things that they had to deal with such as lack of freedom, and little hope of financial advancement. In reality, my friend’s parents had to commute 2hrs to and from work every day, they also had to work long hours during the week, and they’re probably still working even though they’d be in their 60s by now (meanwhile, my parents retired in their early 50s).

But it took me a long to time and realise this, and an even longer time to realise that this wasn’t the way it had to be!

After I finished studying, I was determined to get a 9-5 job. But that wasn’t so easy. I ended up landing a job as a makeup artist, which I know sounds pretty glamorous, but it was a lot of long hours, traveling and hard work. Because it was a commission based job, it taught me something very important:

How much work you put in can and should be reflected in how much you earn!

I didn’t mind working long hours, and I loved the fact that I was being rewarded with lots of money! From that point forward, I routinely worked 2-3 jobs at a time. I worked in offices, retail stores, restaurants, and nightclubs. I loved working hard and I loved earning money. I was also very quick to quit jobs and/or be fired, so I ended up working at a lot of different jobs, but each job taught me something valuable. I also spent time being unemployed and collecting the dole, which I found incredibly soul destroying.

At 21 I landed an entry level job in the Accounts Receivable department at a food wholesaler. I was promoted within the company and ended up with a promising career in accounts ahead of me. I moved onto another company (and other 9-5 job) where I continued my career in accounts. But I hated accounting so ended up going back to school and studying design. There were a few hiccups along the way, but eventually I became a graphic designer.

At 25 I was working full time at a graphic design agency – and I loved it! But I was still trapped in the 9-5. As a junior, the pay was terrible, and I never made more than my base salary, regardless of how much overtime I did or how hard I worked. I was also working Saturday nights and at night club and doing freelance graphic design in my spare time, so that I could earn enough money to pay my mortgage.

After a couple of years, I was offered another job with better pay and shorter hours so I decided to take it. But that job was TERRIBLE and I walked out after three weeks. I started job hunting again but my prospects weren’t too good. Unemployment rates were pretty high at the time, and there were a lot of unemployed graphic designers out there. I couldn’t believe that I’d quit two design jobs and now I was unemployed. I was so mad at myself!

I heard that my design skills might enable me to get a job in marketing, so I started to apply for every marketing job that I could find, and was lucky enough to get a job. But it was only two days a week, so my wage, along with the freelance work that I was doing, was only just enough to cover my bills. I was still focusing most of my energy on getting a full time design job. Not only because I wanted to earn more money, but also because I was still stuck in the limiting mindset that I “needed” a 9-5 job.

Miss Flik in NepalMeanwhile, I had the opportunity to spend a couple of months doing volunteer work in Nepal, and then visit Europe with my family. And thanks to a surprisingly large tax refund, I was actually able to afford to go, and I was able to take the time off from my marketing job. If I’d been working for a design agency at the time, it’s unlikely I would have been able to take time off, so even thought I feel like my professional life was in shambles, it actually allowed me to take advantage of a great opportunity.

The time away allowed me to relax and made me realise that I loved working 2 days a week and doing freelance work. I just spent so much time worrying and job hunting, I never had any time to enjoy it! But when I returned to Australia, I was determined that things would be different! I was going to keep working at my marketing and build up my freelance business so I could freelance full time!

And then I lost my job.

But almost immediately I was offered two freelance contracts with two different agencies. I couldn’t believe it! Just like that I was freelancing full time (and this was after I’d been looking for work for 12 months!). For a while everything was great. Financially things were fine, and I was continuing to build up my freelance business. But then I lost one of my contracts and work with with the other contractor was beginning to dry up. I panicked and started to apply for full time design jobs again.

Surprising, I landed a job almost immediately. It was a great paying design job at an agency only a 10 minute drive from my house. I couldn’t believe how lucky I was! I loved the financial security, but going back to a 9-5 job (which in reality was 8.30-5pm plus lots of overtime) after I’d experienced the freedom of freelancing was not fun. I’d look out the window on a beautiful sunny day and wonder why on earth I was a sacrificing my freedom just for a bit of financial security.

Most days, I had to stay in the office at all times, so I couldn’t even go out for lunch or go to a doctor’s appointment and taking a day off work was almost completely out of the question. I questioned why I was holding onto this job when I was in the very fortunate position to be able to freelance instead. I told myself I’d go back to freelancing once I’d built up my freelance business some more. At this point, I was working 42hrs+ at my job, plus doing 10-20hrs of freelance work during evenings and weekends, and my volunteer work and my social was starting to suffer. I desperately wanted to quit so that I could freelance full time, but I didn’t have enough freelance work. I knew I had the capacity to get more work if I was able to answer my phone during business hours and spend more time going to networking events and promoting myself. But a little part of me still believed that I “needed” a 9-5 job, and quitting my job was just SO SCARY.

For me, the turning point came when work at the agency started to dry up and I started to get sent home early without pay. It made me learn firsthand a very important lesson:

A 9-5 job does not automatically mean financial security or job security.

But even once I stopped holding onto the false illusion of financial security, I still didn’t quit my job. I just needed another little push, which the universe sent to me in the form of a job offer. I was offered a trial at a prestigious advertising agency, that would lead to a permanent job if I made a good impression. This was a dream come true. For a long time I’d wanted to break into advertising. But making the leap from graphic design agency to advertising agency was extremely difficult. I was so overjoyed just to have the opportunity to spend even at day a the advertising agency! I wasn’t allowed to take the day off work, and I figured my days at my current job were numbered anyway, so I quit my job so that I could attend the trial.

But the advertising agency was AWFUL. The other designers were miserable and spent the entire day loudly complaining about how much they hated their jobs. Meanwhile, the job itself turned out to be an entry level job (with an entry level salary), when at that point of I’d been in industry for 5 years. I ended up getting offered the job, but even thought it was supposed to be my dream job, I decided not to take it.

Since that day I’ve been a freelance graphic designer and I can honestly say it is THE BEST JOB IN THE WORLD!

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My productivity secret weapon – mega productivity and the GTD system

How do I manage to run a graphic design business and an online store, and still have time to do volunteer work, run two blogs and have time for a social life? Introducing my secret weapon

Getting Things Done by David Allen

The GTD (Getting Things Done) System, is covered in a book by veteran coach and management consultant David Allens. His premise is simple: our productivity is directly proportional to our ability to relax. Only when our minds are clear and our thoughts are organized can we achieve effective productivity and unleash our creative potential.

getting-things-done-bookIn Getting Things Done, Allen shows how to:

  • Apply the “do it, delegate it, defer it, drop it” rule
  • Reassess goals and stay focused in changing situations
  • Plan projects as well as get them unstuck
  • Overcome feelings of confusion, anxiety, and being overwhelmed
  • Feel fine about what you’re not doing

I’ve read this book twice and it has helped me immensely. It’s an integral part of how I stay productive while I’m self employed. For me, the best tip I got out of this book is to keep a to list and make sure everything is on it. I used to always seem to have ten different things on the go at once because I’d think of something while I was in the middle of something else, and then start doing it straight baixar mobogenie apk away because I was worried I’d forget to do it. Now, I keep a notebook next to me at all times, and as soon as I think of something I write it down.

Don’t like to read?

There is also a fantastic videos training program over at Skillshare that covers that principles in book in 15 easy video lessons (and you can watch them all in 90 minutes!) You can watch an introductory video about the program here:

An Online Skillshare Class by Tiago Forte

Personally I’ve read the book twice and I’ve watched the video series, and it’s been incredible how much it has improved my productivity. How you tried the program? Did it help you? Let me know in the comments!

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