Archives For November 2012

Better to be rich or poor?

Brad Stanton —  November 29, 2012 — 16 Comments

English: President Reagan presents Mother Tere...

English: President Reagan presents Mother Teresa with the Medal of Freedom at a White House Ceremony, 1985. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Russell Conwell was a writer, lawyer, orator, university founder, philanthropist, and Baptist preacher about 100 years ago. He delivered one speech over 6000 times, called “Acres of Diamonds.” This speech was about a man who traveled to the Middle East and heard his guide tell a story about a man who left home looking for wealth. The man didn’t find it and became so discouraged he killed himself. Later, someone else found acres of diamonds on his land, right under his feet. The dead man would have found them if he had bothered to look for wealth right where he was.

Many say this story means that true wealth and happiness are right where you are if you know how to find them. Tens of thousands of people heard this speech and many were so moved by it that they found motivation to seek wealth right where they were. One man, for example sat listening to the speech and saw a lady with a hairpin that looked rather difficult to insert in the hair. The man sat thinking of a way to improve the design.  He did and made a fortune selling the new hairpin.

Another man used the few pennies he had to buy needles and thread to sell on the street. He didn’t sell the products and realized he should find out what people want to buy before investing in the product. He observed that many were buying certain kinds of clothes and he invested in them. He began to sell his wares very quickly and after some years became the richest man in New York City at that time.

Conwell believed strongly that anyone could become rich if they had strong desire and worked toward that goal. He said

 “I say that you ought to get rich, and it is your duty to get rich…. The men who get rich may be the most honest men you find in the community. Let me say here clearly .. . ninety-eight out of one hundred of the rich men of America are honest. That is why they are rich. That is why they are trusted with money. That is why they carry on great enterprises and find plenty of people to work with them. It is because they are honest men. … … I sympathize with the poor, but the number of poor who are to be sympathized with is very small. To sympathize with a man whom God has punished for his sins … is to do wrong…. let us remember there is not a poor person in the United States who was not made poor by his own shortcomings. …”

I don’t fully agree with Conwell’s statement, because people are poor for many different reasons including poor health, living in an area of the world where everyone is poor, mental retardation, and some choose to be poor to spend time helping people, such as Mother Teresa.

Some feel it is a sin to be wealthy and some people even believe Jesus taught that. I believed that for awhile, but while reading the Old Testament I saw over and over again that God promised prosperity to everyone who followed his commands and did certain things. Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1; Deuteronomy 30:15; 1 Kings 2:3; Psalm 37:11; Psalm 25:12-14 Proverbs 8:17-19; Proverbs 19:8 Jeremiah 29:11 are a few examples of many promises in the Bible. But unfortunately, they have to be accepted by faith, which is extremely difficult. Also, it can take years, and lots of hard work for promises to come about.

I find that in general, rich people can do more good for the world by donating money and time than people who are not rich. It doesn’t have to be that way, but it usually is. Poor people who have lots of free time could become very powerful prayer warriors, but most do not. They could spend time helping people, some do, but I find most don’t. It is usually the wealthier people who do this. Strange, but that is just what I have observed.

I know many will disagree, feel free to leave a comment expressing another viewpoint.


Parachute humor (humour, for non USA folks).

Money humor

Brad Stanton —  November 25, 2012 — 15 Comments

A man knew that his grandmother was rich and about to die. He went to visit her and help her in any way that he could. She told him that she had half a million dollars hidden underneath the floorboards in the kitchen. She wanted him to have it because he was the only one that cared enough about her to come and take care of her.

After the grandmother’s funeral the man retrieved the money and dug a hole in his backyard to bury it. The next day he went out to check on the buried treasure. All he found was an empty hole. As he inspected the area, he saw footprints from the hole leading to the house next door, which was owned by a deaf-mute.

Down the street lived a woman who had a deaf son, so she understood sign language, so the man hurried to her house and brought her to the deaf-mute to interrogate him. He brought his hand gun hidden under his coat.

He screamed at the woman, “Tell this deaf-mute that I know he stole my money and that if he doesn’t give it back I will kill him!”

The lady signed the message to the deaf mute, who replied in sign language “I hid it in the cupboards in the basement.”

The interpreter then turned to the man with the gun and said “He says he will never tell you where the money is, even if you kill him.”


“He who is happiest is he who is content…” ~Benjamin Franklin

Happiness

Happiness (Photo credit: baejaar)

A wise man said to his friend “Every time I see you, you are running around in a hurry. What are you running after?”

The man answered quickly “Success, money and the rewards of my hard work.”

The wise man said “That would make sense if you assumed all those things are ahead of you, but what if all those things were behind you, and the faster you run, the more difficult it is for those things to catch up to you?”

We all run after something. What are you running after?  Are you running after money, a beautiful house, a person, a position in your company, a degree, a relationship, a better relationship with loved ones? There is nothing wrong with these things, but they won’t fully satisfy you unless you learn to be content.

A writer found an old list of goals he had set for himself. He had written many books and spoke regularly to large groups of people. He was surprised that he had accomplished every one of his goals so quickly. But as he continued to think about it, he was also surprised that he was not more content with what he had. Many people expect outward circumstances to fulfill their inner happiness. Instead of constantly running, take some time to rest and enjoy what you have.

Many very successful people who train others for success say that one of the best things you can do to achieve more success is to enjoy what you already have and be thankful. You reap what you sow, if you think about happy things you will sow more happy things. Being grateful is one way of keeping happy thoughts in your mind. Happy thoughts can’t be in your mind at the same time as sad thoughts. The best way to push sad, angry or any other undesirable thoughts out of your mind is to think about happy thoughts.

Sometimes I count my blessings in my mind, sometimes I write out a list of things I am grateful for, but either way, I always feel happier after I do it.

Here in the USA, we have a holiday for being grateful. We call it “Thanksgiving.” People get together with family, eat turkey and other delicious food, and have fun.

Enjoy where you are instead of where you want to be.

Don’t give up now!

Brad Stanton —  November 17, 2012 — 11 Comments

A man who studied 500 of the most successful people in the world wrote a number of books about his findings. One idea that he stresses in his writing is:

“One of the most common causes of failure is the habit of quitting when one is overtaken by temporary defeat. Every person is guilty of this mistake at one time or another.” 1

A man named Darby lived during the gold-rush days of the west in the USA and moved to an area where many were finding gold. He searched for weeks and finally found  gold. He covered up the mine and went back east to raise money from friends and relatives so that he could buy the equipment he needed to mine the gold. Because he was so enthusiastic, many agreed to invest money in his gold mine.

He mined a sizable amount of gold with his uncle, but not enough to pay off the debt. In doing so he found that this was one of the richest mines in Colorado! He kept working, bringing up more gold and bringing it to the smelter.

Darby and his uncle drew up more gold and were very happy. But then the unimaginable happened. The vein of gold was mined and they found no more veins. They searched day after day but could not find any more gold.

They grew weary and decided to quit.

They took the machinery that mined the gold and sold it to a junk man for very little money. They did not realize the junk man was very clever. He called in a mining engineer to investigate the mine and apply his knowledge of mines to search for more gold. According to the engineer, the original project failed because the owners were not familiar with “fault lines.” The amazing thing he found was that the owners had quit digging just three feet from a mother lode, a huge vein of gold.

The junk man made millions of dollars from the mine because he knew enough to seek expert advice.

So it seems that it might be a sad ending for Darby. But the truth is that he learned a very important lesson. He realized he had stopped just short of millions of dollars’ worth of gold. He realized that he quit too easily and that even though the chances looked bleak, he should have kept going and sought expert advice.

So Darby began to sell insurance. Many try and fail at this endeavor. But Darby had learned his lesson, he learned to keep going no matter how bleak things look and to seek advice. He learned not to give up when a potential buyer said no. Because of the lesson he learned he was able to sell more than a million dollars of insurance every year, and that was in the days when a million dollars was worth much more than it is today.

“More than five hundred of the most successful men this country has ever known told the author their greatest success came just one step beyond the point at which defeat had overtaken them. Failure is a trickster with a keen sense of irony and cunning. It takes great delight in tripping one when success is almost within reach.” 2

 

1 Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill page 22

2 Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill page 23


Andrew Carnegie Music Hall

Andrew Carnegie Music Hall (Photo credit: cliff1066™)

Here are some of my favorite quotes:

If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hope. Andrew Carnegie

Believe when others doubt, work when others refuse, stay when others quit and you will win when others lose

Faith the size of a mustard seed can move mountains. Matthew 17:20

Within you right now is the power to do things you never dreamed possible. Dr. Maxwell Maltz

A man’s life is dyed by the color of his imagination.~ Marcus Aurelius

Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later. Og Mandino

Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous. Albert Einstein

I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free. Michelangelo

Prayer is but the expansion of yourself into the living Universe. ~ Kahlil Gibran

The time of God’s giving is always now. Robert A. Russell

Whatever we believe does, for us, in very fact exist.~ Judge Thomas Toward

99% of all failures come from people who have a habit of making excuse. George Washington Carver

You are connected to everyone  in the universe, including God. John 17

To increase your happiness, increase your gratitude. Give thanks many times a day.

You are what you think about all day long. Robert Schuller

You are creating your future with every single thought. ~Jack Canfield

Kind people benefit themselves, but the cruel bring ruin on themselves. Proverbs 11:17

Get more joy and fun in your life.

You can only be truly successful if you take complete responsibility for your life.

Envision the future u desire. Create the life of your dreams. See it, feel it, believe it. ~Jack Canfield

Faith is believing that God is on our side and he knows what he’s doing.

Law of attraction: you attract into your life whatever you focus on.

Your future is created by what you do today, not tomorrow. Kiyoshaki

Vision is the art of seeing the invisible. Jonathon Swift

Create a life filled with passion and significance. Create a life of purpose. Follow your bliss. Jack Canfield

For more quotes, follow me on Twitter @BradStanton1z or click the twitter button in the right hand column below this post.

Lose Weight

Brad Stanton —  November 10, 2012 — 16 Comments

I suppose we all agree that in order to lose weight we need to eat less and exercise. That seems pretty simple, so why is it so difficult to lose weight? For me, I find there are five keys to losing weight, the five D’s:

  • Desire-first I have to really want to lose weight
  • Don’t doubt (believe you can do it)
  • Dream about it, visualize it
  • Discipline-I have to be willing to eat less and exercise
  • Determined-I have to be persistent and keep dieting even though I occasionally give in to temptation and eat too much.

 

Desire and Don’t Doubt
It all starts with desire. If you have burning desire to achieve a goal, you probably will achieve it if you believe you can. We have all heard people say “I just can’t lose weight, I’ve tried many times and failed.” Doubt is one of our worst enemies for achieving any goal, something that I write about often in my posts.
Interestingly enough, the secrets for losing weight are pretty much the same as the secret to building wealth. I have read a number of books about how to be successful in relationships, career, health, wealth and life in general. The amazing thing is that they all give the same advice about how to achieve goals. I expected the wealth book to give me tips on which stocks to buy, which real estate to purchase, but most of well-respected books about building wealth give advice about setting goals, desire, belief, visualization, discipline and determination to succeed.
If a person really wants to lose weigh more than they want to eat too much, they will soon begin to eat less. If they want a slender body more than they want the pleasure of overeating, they are on the road to success.
If a person has strong desire they will be willing to work hard to achieve their goal. Arnold Schwarzenegger said that when he was lifting weights to accomplish his goal of winning Mr. Universe so that he could become an actor, that if he missed a workout he felt so badly about it that he actually felt sick. The emotional discomfort of not achieving his daily goal was so strong that the next day he wouldn’t even consider staying away from the gym. That is not to say that we should feel guilty and criticize ourselves when we miss our goal. In fact, that deflates our motivation and starts us in a downward spiral. But if we want something very badly, we just won’t be satisfied if we are not on track to achieve whatever it is we want.
The key to losing weight is to desire the benefits of weight loss, be disciplined enough to exercise more and eat less and determined enough to stick with it for a long time.
Many experts say that instead of dieting, it is best to modify eating habits. In other words, make a permanent change to the way you eat.

 

Dream
Visualizing yourself slender helps a lot. In his book “Arnold, The Education of a Bodybuilder” Schwarzenegger said that one of the keys to building muscle is visualizing your muscles growing larger. I read his book in the late 1970’s and thought it seemed silly and unbelievable. But now I find that many sports psychologists say it is true. In fact, back in the days of the Soviet Union, visualization techniques for Olympic athletes in East Germany were state secrets because their psychology was so advanced and successful. In those days East Germany won more medals per capita than any other country. US athletes use visualization techniques while preparing for the Olympics. Visualizing yourself at a certain weight will help a lot.
Also, I look at pictures of myself when I only weighed 250 pounds, like in the “about me” photo to remind myself that I can do it. Pictures of your slender self are powerful for bringing about change, this is widely accepted as true by success coaches, it is not just my idea. For more information, search “vision boards” on the internet.

 

Discipline
I find affirmations are great for building discipline and bringing about change. If you have never used affirmations, you might think the idea sounds silly at first, but I promise you they really do work. Some of mine are:
I weigh 250 pounds (I weigh more than that now, but will reach that weight later)
I don’t like to eat too much.
I enjoy healthy food.
I enjoy the benefits of my slender body.
I say these out loud as often as I need them. In addition, I say “I am happy, healthy, wealthy, wise and good looking.”  (Doesn’t have to be true yet, haha)

 

Determined
By determined, I mean keep with it, don’t give up no matter what.
Eating healthy food and plenty of fruits and vegetables and drinking lots of water help you lose weight. I find if I don’t get proper nutrition, my body starts to crave food that might be high in calories because I need the nutrition in that food, but it is best to get it in low calorie alternatives instead of junk food. Some fad diets say don’t eat grains, this is bad advice. For decades the experts tell us we need plenty of grains for good nutrition. The problem is that it is easy to eat too many grains and that leads to weight gain.
I find that if I want something bad enough and really believe I can do it, everything else falls into place to achieve the goals and dreams in my life.
So to lose weight, stay motivated! Read motivational books, blogs (including mine), magazine articles. Listen to motivational material as you drive. All it takes is desire (motivation) and everything else falls into place.

 

The invisible world

Brad Stanton —  November 9, 2012 — 15 Comments

Rainy day people always seem to know when it’s time to call. ~Gordon Lightfoot

Have you ever been feeling down and someone who cares about you calls out of the blue even though he had no way of knowing you were down? It is as if they could sense your sadness even though they were not with you.

“When I saw the policeman at my door, I knew my father had died.”

Many years ago a friend told me that one day she was at school and she suddenly felt that something terrible had happened. Later a policeman came to the door of her house and she knew without a doubt what had happened. Her father had died. He was killed in a car wreck. How could she know? Was there a “disturbance in the force” like they talked about in Star Wars? Is there really a collective unconscious, as so many psychologists believe?

I remember another close friend who moved away from the town I lived in to Cape Canaveral, Florida. She said that she actually felt closer to our little circle of friends after she left than before. She said it was as if she was with us in spirit.

The invisible world is much more beautiful than the one we can see with our eyes. Faith, hope, love, joy, peace and people’s spirits are in the invisible realms. We can’t see love, but sometimes we can feel it. Just because we don’t feel it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

Napoleon Hill studied 500 extremely successful people such as Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, US presidents, Andrew Carnegie and others and found that a common belief they had was that there is something like a collective unconscious available to give us insights into the secrets of the universe and ideas for success. Isaac Newton, the most brilliant scientist that ever lived, died long before the term “collective unconscious” was made by the psychologist Carl Jung, but he believed that God gave him insights into the secrets of science.

One day a girl was walking down the street in Seoul, South Korea. As she walked she felt that something was telling her to go to a house down the street. She had no idea why she should do that, except that she felt she was supposed to pray for someone, she didn’t know who. She timidly walked up to the door of the house she had not been to before, not knowing who would answer. A lady answered. The girl asked if anyone in the house needed prayer. The lady said,

“My son is in bed. He is dying. Would you pray for him?”

She went to the boy’s bed and prayed for him. He began to recover. He later became a pastor and through powerful faith built the largest church in the world. His name is Dr. Cho.

In John chapter seven Jesus says that Christians are one with God and with each other. I suppose that means we are one in spirit. The more we tap into the oneness of spirit, the more we can learn the secrets of the universe. Our spirits are set free, we love others more and more, and we can experience more love, joy and peace.

Memorial Stones

Brad Stanton —  November 7, 2012 — 10 Comments

Throughout history, people have erected stones to memorialize victories in war, great achievements, historical events and religious ideas. Not long after the tsunami hit Japan over a year ago, I saw a picture of memorial stones on the sides of the hill above the Fukishima nuclear power plant area. The stones were very large, about six feet tall and in the Japanese characters it said:

“DON’T BUILD YOUR HOUSES BELOW THIS POINT”

Apparently centuries ago there was a tsunami that destroyed towns along the coast and the houses farther up the hill were spared because the wall of water didn’t go up that high. But as time went on, people built their homes just a little below the danger line. Generations passed and more people began to build their homes farther down the hill, closer to the beach. In modern times they build a protective wall in the sea to prevent waves from crashing into the buildings on the coast. But we all know what happened, a huge tsunami, much taller than the protective wall crashed into the buildings along the coast.

A woman’s husband died and she inherited a $20,000. But after the funeral she complained to her friend that she was broke.

“Broke?” her friend replied, shocked. “But where did all that money go that you inherited?”

“Well, I spent $10,000 on the funeral and $10,000 on the memorial stone.” the widow answered.

“That must have been some memorial stone!” the friend said.

“The widow held out her hand and showed it to her friend. “Yes, about three carats.”

Anyway, the point of this post is that it is good to remember your victories, whether you do it with a memorial stone or some other way. We all have lots of failures and it is easy to focus on those. Focusing on failures only brings us down and doesn’t energize us for victory, focusing on our successes does.

People who are depressed and accomplish less than their best in life almost always are the kind of person who dwells on failures and unhappy things of the past. Remembering what that person did wrong to me is a sure way to become unhappy. Remembering all the times I failed to stay on my diet is a recipe for disaster. Remembering my mistakes at work only deflates my motivation.

Remember to remember your victories. They will lift you up and help you have more victories in the future. You reap what you sow. If you think victory and happy thoughts you will sow more of these thoughts and good things in life.