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Goals Growth and Greatness

We Are Only Human

March20

I know we all have the best intentions to be grateful, be positive and make the most of every minute we have  here on planet Earth. Life often serves up some curve balls though and i know as well as you that its not always easy to be happy with everything in our lives….. and that’s ok.

We are only human and being human is a fascinating experience and more of often than not, its a challenge. The best way i have seen it described is by Scott Brandon Hoffman in his website www.livinginahumansuit.com This guy is a classic! Often referred to as the mad spiritual guy, his take on life is beautiful and full of comedy.

Anyway, as humans we often allow small disappointments to go unchecked and often that can turn into a bad mood. I will be the first one to admit that there are times where i am not always the happiest person to be around.

The cool thing is we have the power to change the way we are feeling simply by becoming aware of it. This takes practice but the more we live in the present, the more we become in touch with who we are and why we react in certain ways.

If you find yourself disappointed or upset, its important to become aware of it quickly before it spirals into a vicious cycle of despair, sadness and sometimes anger.

Here are a few ways you can shift your mood from down to up:

•    Move – literally. Moving physically helps us shift psychologically. Get up and get out – go for a walk, play with the dog, dance ridiculously to a silly song or even just stand up, shake it all out and do some star jumps.
•    Clean up your head – make a conscious decision to stop thinking negatively. Avoid words like should, try and but – they make room for the negative to creep in. Focus on viewing everything in a positive light – find the silver lining.
•    Watch how you carry yourself. Happy people stand taller, take bigger steps and walk faster. Put your shoulders back, hold your head high and smile.
•    Focus on what you DO want – not what you don’t. Whether you believe in the law of attraction or not, there is no need to allow for a negative outcome. Let the universe know what you do want.
•    Avoid people who sap your energy. We all know someone like this – time with them leaves us depleted. Surround yourself with people who leave you refreshed and revitalised.

Next time you are feeling a little overwhelmed, have a go at the techniques above; it will  help you nip a bad mood in the bud – leaving you free to enjoy your day the way you intended it!

Cheers,

Matt

posted under Passion | 8 Comments »

Go with the flow

March10

I was down the beach having a swim yesterday morning. It was a glorious day with the sun rising over the water and kissing my skin with warmth; the water was a pleasant 23 degrees Celsius and i was drifting over the glassy swell and body surfing the waves to the shore.

While i was waiting for the next set to arrive, i stood there alone in the water looking out to the horizon and felt the undertow subtly dragging me out. It was an eerie feeling and i was careful to not let it take me away.

Then and stopped and became aware of my thought patterns. Why was i  determined not to let the current pull me out? Why was i digging my heels into the sand and resisting its natural flow? The sea was very calm at that time and there was no reason to fear the power of its pull. I was in no danger as I knew my surroundings and the ocean was in perfect harmony with my body.

I related it to how we sometimes react in life. We tend to think we have some ability to control what is happening around us and in essence we really don’t. We can set goals, make appointments , beat dead lines till the cows come home but in the end we don’t control anything.

That’s why it is so important to go with the flow. Now I’m not talking about kicking back on the couch all day watching sport – that’s not going with the flow, that’s giving up on the flow.

You still need to put in the effort to achieve your goals but once you have done all you can do, let it go. Its called the set it and forget it method. Put the goal, dream or intention out there, strive to achieve it but know when to stop and just have the belief that everything will work out as it needs to.

So as i thought through this concept while waiting for the next wave to come through i released my contorted toes from their grip on the sand beneath me; i took a deep breath and let the power of the water take me. The ocean gently picked me up and moved me to the trough of the next breaking wave where i was able to effortlessly climb aboard and surf it to the shore – brilliant!

I picked myself up off the sand, turned and thanked the ocean for its lesson on life and went back to my car and drove home with a smile on my face 🙂

When you travel on your path to greatness, always respect the power of the ocean and always respect the flow of the universe. Trust in its intention and go with the flow.

posted under Purpose | 7 Comments »

5 Steps To Realising Your Goal: Part 5

March5

You made it!

This is the final installment of the 5 part series on realising your goals. If you want to refresh your memory before we go into the final stage just click on one of these links: Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

I know you have all been hanging out for the final installment so lets get into it

Part 5:  Its all about the Growth

Before i start i want to tell you a little story about the bee. You see, the bee has been scientifically proven to be unable to fly given the ratio between its weight and its wing size. How can this bee I here you ask?  I don’t know and that’s not the point.

The point is the bee gets up every morning and doesn’t let the fact that it is physically impossible for him to fly, she just gets up and does her thing; flying from flower to flower spreading pollen so that we continue to have healthy plant life that provides us humans with vegetable crops to eat… and honey of course 🙂

So how does all this relate? Well when you set a goal you are setting up something to aim for like the bee does with the flower. You do everything in your power to achieve that goal ignoring the opinions of others as the bee does with our scientific findings.

Along the way you discover other interests that may take you from the path of your original goal and that’s ok because you would never have found that path unless you set the original goal in the first place.

Confused? Ok all i am saying is don’t make your goals the be all and end all. Yes it is critically important to set goals, dreams and milestones but realise it is not about the goal, its all about the growth. The growth that you achieve while striving for that goal is what is important.

What you think you want to achieve right now may not be the truth but its all you have got to work with so….. work with it! Strive for that goal but realise it may lead you down another path and that other path usually turns out to be the real path; the path you were born to take.

So don’t beat yourself up if you don’t achieve your goal on the exact date you set, congratulate yourself for the growth you have achieved and the lessons you have learned so far because its those experiences that will take you down your true path. Its important to trust that wherever you are right now is exactly where you are supposed to be.

If you are confused, depressed, unmotivated or procrastinating; stop for a minute and become aware of your state of mind and realise that you need to be on this path to get to the next one. Confusion is a good place to be because that is the first phase to clarity.

My final point is to understand where you are now so that you can understand where you need to go. Set the goals, strive to achieve them and make sure you take stock of where you are heading. If you get off course, don’t panic. Realise you are where you need to be and replot your course.

The exciting thing is you really don’t know where you will end up but just trust that you are already on the right path and if you are not you soon will be as long as you continue to set goals and take consistent action to achieve them.

Good luck and feel free to comment about the goals you are striving for. Putting them out to the world brings a stronger accountability for you to achieve them.

Cheers,

Matt

posted under Goals | 4 Comments »

5 Steps To Realising Your Goal: Part 4

February23

Hi everyone!

We are almost there! If you have not read part 3, take a look at the previous post before you get rolling on part 4: Taking Action

I know, i know this is the tough part but hey, we had to get to it at some stage – nothing comes from nothing.

I often think of this mantra i heard once: Thoughts create Actions create Results. When you think about it, everything originated from a thought in someone’s head. This computer monitor you are looking at, the music you might be listening to, the socks you wear, the toothpaste you use! Everything started as a thought and it was the action that was taken that brought it into reality – Results!

Now i have hundreds of thoughts every day and i am sure you do too – most of them come when i am having a shower in the morning, when my mind is relaxed and open. For these thoughts to come into existence you need to take action.

When i say take action i mean doing whatever it takes! The action you take today will determine your results for tomorrow so dont just do the bare essentials – nobody gets ahead by doing the minimum required. You have to go to the next level and do whatever it takes!

The people who have the most amounts of results in life are the people who are willing to do more than most are willing to do.  The people who have the results in their lives that you don’t have in yours are the people who are taking actions that you are not taking just yet.  When you take those actions you too will have those results.  It is that easy!

This is where your goal sheets become your crucial tool; they go with you everywhere. Don’t leave home without them. Stay focused on what your end result needs to be and continue to ask yourself when faced at a crossroad, “Will this take me closer or further away from my goals?”

If you have followed the lessons so far you should have a number of goals and a number of actions you need to take to achieve them. When you wake up in the morning just choose 2 of those tasks that will get you closer to your goal.

When i wake up in the morning i ask 3 questions: What am i happy about today? What am i grateful for today? What 2 actions can i take today that will get me closer to my goal? When you ask yourself a question, your mind will not let up until it gives you an answer so make sure you are listening when you ask the questions.

One last thing – enjoy the process! Life is not a chore, its something we are blessed with every day so take action and enjoy the process of living your dreams.

Cheers,

Matt

posted under Goals | 4 Comments »

5 Steps To Realising Your Goal – Part 3

February19

Hi everyone

How is your goal setting going? We are going to be taking a bit more action with this post so if you have not already, please go back and have a read of part 2 of this series: www.findmattjones.com/5-steps-to-realising-your-goal-part-2/

How did you go finding your why? Was it easy tapping into your inner purpose or did you really struggle? Either way, take a moment to congratulate yourself for coming this far. Its not an easy task tapping into your inner self if you are not used to it and it may take a while to really find the burning desire behind your goals.

I will tell you a quick story about a very successful friend of mine. He spent many years building his business up and eventually had a break down; he reached a snap point in his life and began to question what his success was really for. He discovered he did not have a why behind it all and suddenly everything became meaningless. He ended up taking 12 months to step out of his business and life in general.

Over that time, he asked himself a question when he woke up and before he went to sleep. He asked this question every day for 9 months – he didn’t just ask the question, he pleaded for the answer! He basically cut himself off from the world to find the answer – the REAL answer to this question: “What is my purpose?”

Pretty simple question right? It doesn’t come easy though so don’t beat yourself up if it doesn’t come to you straight away. In fact, even if you did discover your why it may turn out to be something else down the track but its the fact that you made a decision to choose a path now that will lead you to the path you really need to be on.

Ok, enough chit chat here is Part 3: Navigate Your Course

Like anything, you need a plan of attack. Now, i am not talking about a full blueprint of the next 20 years i am just talking about what you need to do right now to get you navigating on the right path.

I am a big believer in having a system so here is what i want you to do: Prepare 10 pieces of paper – i am talking actual paper, not your computer screen. On the top of the first piece of paper write your 12 month goal and write the date 12 months from now. Then go ahead and write your goal on that sheet of paper – If you want some more tips on writing goals you can check out this previous post: www.findmattjones.com/s-m-a-r-t-goals/

Now you have the end result set in stone you can work backwards. The rest is a bit like filling a glass with rocks, pebbles sand and water… you have to start with the big rocks, followed by the pebbles, filling in the gaps with sand and finally the water. This is what you need on the other 9 sheets of paper:

9th sheet: Write the date 9 months from now and the bigger tasks that need to be completed before your 12 month goal is complete

8th sheet: Write the date 6 months from now and the bigger tasks that need to be completed before your 9 month goal is complete

7th sheet: Write the date 3 months from now and the bigger tasks that need to be completed before your 6 month goal is complete

6th sheet: Write the date 60 days from now and the tasks that need to be completed before your 3 month goal is complete

5th sheet: Write the date 30 days from now and the tasks that need to be completed before your 60 day goal is complete

4th sheet: Write the date 21 days from now and the tasks that need to be completed to achieve your 30 day goal

3rd sheet: Write the date 14 days from now and the tasks that need to be completed to achieve your 21 day goal

2nd sheet: Write the date 7 days from now and the tasks that need to be completed to achieve your 14 day goal

1st sheet: Write down what you have to do in the next 7 days to achieve your 7 day goal

It might seem a little repetitive but i have used this system for a number of years and i can tell you its the single most powerful task i do every week – apart from looking at my dreamboard 🙂

By setting the goal first and working backwards you are breaking the goal up into chunks, making it a lot more manageable and ensuring you are less likely to procrastinate. If you want to take it to the next level, team up with an accountability buddy to help you stay on track and committed to achieving that goal.

To get you started i have created a template of the 10 sheets to record your goal. Just click on this link to download them

Good luck and stay tuned for Part 4!

Cheers,

Matt


posted under Goals | 6 Comments »

5 Steps To Realising Your Goal – Part 2

February10

Hi everyone and welcome back to Part 2 of this powerful series of posts. If you missed the first one click here to read part 1

I hope you all found the time to sit quietly and focus on what you want; if you haven’t don’t beat yourself up about it. I know as well as anyone that life gets in the way sometimes and its important to not use that as an excuse. Congratulate yourself for coming this far and reset your thought patterns and go again. It is critical to always associate positive feelings whenever you are creating your goals. If you see them as a chore, your subconscious will never really believe you so always make the experience pleasant. When setting your goals, do something you love, play your favourite music, go to your favorite spot; the more positive emotion you associate with your goal setting the more likely you will succeed in achieving them.

Ok that’s enough on that lets move on

Part 2 – Know your “Why”:

Remember i said in the last post to write freely without inhibition when discovering what your goals are? Well now you have got them out on paper you need to discover your “why” behind having them.

You see, i know for a fact that you really don’t want a lot of money -truthfully i know you don’t want to be a millionaire. Now, i know what you are saying, “Matt, you don’t know me from a bar of soap and you are wrong on that one.” Well i can tell you that you don’t want the money, you want all the things you can buy with the money. Money is just a concept that we all choose to believe in and collectively we agree to its value. So don’t focus on the money, focus on what you can do with it.

I am going to stay on the money topic for a second as its an easy example to work with. Lets say one of your goals was to have another $50k in your bank account by the end of the year. The money itself is a meaningless goal to strive for; you need to attach some passion and purpose to that goal… you need a “why”.

What are you going to do with that $50k? Will it buy you an overseas trip? Will it pay off the mortgage? Will it buy you a new car or boat? Will it mean you can take 6 months off work to be there for the birth of your child? These questions all bring purpose and context to the goal and purpose precedes your goals.

Once you have come up with your “why” make sure it truly gives you a burning desire to achieve your goals. The more powerful the why, the faster you will get there.

Really focus on this for a minute.

Get in touch with your soul and find out what really moves you to succeed; is it your kids? is it your parents? What is it that makes you get up and say, “I want this goal so much that my life depends on it!” Because in truth your life does depend on it; if you are not moving forward, striving to be a better person you are not evolving anymore, you are dissolving! Without passion, purpose and a “why” you are just going through the motions… just existing without actually living.

I want to share with you what my goal and my why is. I set a 5 year goal to be financially free by the time i am 40. I have exactly 3 years and  3 months left to achieve this goal.  Financial freedom for me is having a passive income that exceeds all our expenses and provides us with the lifestyle we choose to live.

My why and my burning desire to achieve this goal comes down to this: My wife and i would like to have kids. Its the one thing that i have wanted all my life. And when that special day comes in the not too distant future i want to be completely devoted to the experience of being a Dad. I don’t want to miss one minute of them growing up and i especially don’t want to miss anything because someone says i have to go to work.

This purpose behind being financially free is what will make it a reality. The purpose is a fire within that i only need to think about briefly and it gets me motivated to take action… consistent daily action

One other thing – when you set your goal, don’t worry about how it is going to happen. If your ‘why’ is strong enough the ‘how’ will show up on its own accord. I am constantly amazed how opportunities present themselves to help you achieve your goal when you never would  have guessed that the goal was possible.

I hope this was helpful and remember to associate plenty of passion and purpose with your goals. Your emotions are the turbo chargers of your thought.

Bye for now 🙂

Matt

posted under Goals | 5 Comments »

5 Steps To Realising Your Goal – Part 1

February5

I truly believe that everyone has greatness inside of them yet a lot of us have never been taught how to reveal each of our gifts to the world. So here is a series of posts to get you on your way to help you bring out the best in you by setting your goals and smashing them!

Part 1 – Know where you are going

Confucius says, “The person who aims at nothing is sure to hit it”

The first step to achieving your goal is to first know what it is and this is often the hardest part. So often i have procrastinated about writing down my goals, often from fear of not being able to achieve them or worse, fear of achieving them! For some people knowing their goals is quite simple, something is already burning inside them and they know what they want. For others like me, i have to really work at it.

So i have devised a system to help you get your goals our of your head and onto a piece of paper – its nothing special and you may have tried it before. Here it is:

Grab a a blank piece of A4 paper and a pen and find a quiet spot where you can be alone and content with yourself without any interruptions – that means no phone, no internet, no tv or radio…. yes you will survive without these things 🙂

Write at the top of the page: “Having no limitations in my life, I have…..”

Take a few deep breaths and ask your subconscious to open up and deliver all your hopes and dreams from your mind to your hand. Now  start writing for 5 minutes without stopping. Just write freely without inhibition. Write all the thoughts and feelings that come into your head after you read the sentence at the top of the page.  Make sure you write for the full 5 minutes, its often the last few seconds where you get the most insight.

By doing this you are revealing the power of your subconscious and all the things you are capable of. Do not fear what you write, it will manifest on your page as it needs to, you might even be surprised with what you come up with.

This process is such an important step for achieving your goals; if you dont bring them out of your thoughts and into reality they can never manifest.

Did you ever play “Pinyata” as a child? You remember right? Someone gives you a big stick and puts a blindfold on you and spins you round 3 times. Then you whack the hell out of this dangling paper mache animal to make all the lollies fall out.. man i love that game 🙂

Anyway, playing Pinata is like chasing your goals without writing them down – you whip yourself up into a frenzy trying to smash these damn lollies out of the animal but you just cant see what to hit!

Now i have a massive sweet tooth and when i set a goal i chase it down like a greyhound chasing a rabbit at the dog track. But to win that prize i first have to know what i am heading for.

Your goals must be crystal clear to the point you have them memorized with total clarity. In fact every time you read them it should bring up emotion and excitement within your body. Being attached physically, mentally and emotionally to your goals ensures your success.

Start getting your goals onto paper and i will see you back here for Part 2!

Cheers,

Matt

posted under Goals | 9 Comments »

The Secret To Achieving Your Goals

January29

Hi everyone

About a year ago i put together a dream board. Now if you haven’t used a dream board before then in essence, it is something like a pinboard where you place pictures of all the things you would like to bring into reality. That all sounds lovely and positive but its not as easy as just cutting out a few pictures and putting them on your wall.

There are a few parameters that you must adhere to:

1. Spend some quality time each day for a couple of weeks looking for pictures that resemble what you would like – don’t hold back, if you want it cut it out and put it aside for now. They can be a picture of anything – don’t limit yourself, its important to choose things that bring up positive emotion when you see these images. Focus on what makes you happy not what others think will make you happy

2. Cut out some photos of yourself and your loved ones. They could be photos of family or friends, just as long as they are people that you love and you want to associate them with your goals and dreams.

3. Go and buy a good size piece of corflute or pinboard that is about 700mm x 500mm Most Officeworks kind of places have them for about $10. I buy the green ones since this color enhances your imagination – the most powerful asset you have – more on this in another post 🙂

4. Allocate a couple of hours in your favorite chill out area and go through all the pictures and photos that you prepared. Arrange them in whatever fashion that you like and glue or pin them to your dream board. Ensure that the pictures of your loved ones are there with your goals

5. Once this is done stand back and take a look at all of those awesome pictures you have put together and start to evoke the feelings in you that made you choose them in the first place.

6. This is the most important part: spend 15 mins every day looking at your dream board and associating a lot of positive emotion while looking at it.  Do this for 45 days in a row. If you miss a day start again.  I know that is tough but it is important to commit.

Remember to not make this a chore; enjoy the process. If you associate any negativity with it then the dream board wont work.

This might all sound a little airy fairy and in no way does it replace setting your goals and taking action on every one of them. By building the dream board you set your mind on a path and once your subconscious locks onto that path it wont let it go until you get there. That’s why its important to put pictures of yourself with loved ones on it so when you reach your goal everyone is there (including you) to enjoy the moment!

Let me say i was a little skeptical when i was told about this strategy but i can tell you now that exactly one year after creating the board i moved into my dream house, exactly as it is on the dream board.

Check it out for yourself – its a little hard to see but in the first image at the top left of the dream board is my dream house set in a rainforest that is 15mins to the beach. In the second image is the actual house that is literally set on 1.5 acres of rainforest and 15mins to the beach!

Enjoy making your dream board and dont hold back. You have all the resources, knowledge and ability to create whatever you want right now 🙂

posted under Passion | 6 Comments »

Consistent Daily Improvement

January16

Hi everyone

We are still rocking through January so i thought before the year gets away from us all, i should mention something about being consistent.

Have you ever heard of the phrase, “anything worth doing is worth doing properly”? Well i want to change this a little and say that anything worth doing is worth doing consistently.

Now considering we are starting a new year and a new decade, its a great opportunity to set some goals and start sticking to them; the best way i have found to achieve goals is to do something every day that takes you one step closer to that goal, hence the title of this blog, Consistent Daily Improvement.

If you decided to walk from Perth to Sydney (for those that don’t know Australia, that’s a really long way – 4000km!) then you would have to continually adjust your direction so that you took the shortest route. If every step was not heading towards Sydney, sooner or later you are going to be way off track.

So its really important to firstly set a goal and a time frame and then take daily action to get towards that goal. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t take massive steps everyday, they can be baby steps just as long as they are all heading towards your goal.

If you are just 1% closer to achieving your goal every day then imagine where you will be in 365days!

Good luck and feel free to let me know how you are going with you consistent daily improvement 🙂

Cheers,

Matt

posted under Goals | 7 Comments »

S.M.A.R.T Goals

January9

Hi everyone.

Happy New Year! Its been a couple of weeks since my last post but i am refreshed and ready to go for another year!

We are still in the first month of a new decade so don’t waste any more time in setting your goals for the year (or the decade!) What do you want to get out of the next 12 months? Take the time now to sit quietly and have a think about it.

To make it a bit easier i use this acronym to help me set goals:

Specific

Measurable

Achievable

Realistic

Time related

Whenever you set a new goal its important to adhere to these 5 rules of goal setting – they are all as important as each other. Lets go through each one quickly:

Specific – make sure you have plenty of clarity about what you want your outcome to be. Get emotional about it because that’s what will drive you to achieving your goal. The more clear and connected you are with your goal the more likely you will achieve it. For example don’t just say i want to earn more money by the end of the year, say how much and by when and what it will buy you.

Measurable – You have to know that you have actually achieved your goal and this is partly to do with being specific about it. What i mean by measurable is that there must be a way for you to write down in your own words what will have happened when you achieve your goal. For example if it was to earn another $10ooo  this year then write how happy you are to see this money in your bank account statement.

Achievable – This is a big one for me because sometimes i aim too high. This isn’t always a bad thing but its important that you believe that you can achieve your goal. The ideal aim would be to go after something that is just out of your reach.

Realistic – This follows on well from achievable; your goal must be something that is reasonable. In other words if you earn $50k per year and you set the goal of earning $500k this year then you might be setting yourself up for failure. Don’t aim to low but just make it realistic

Time Related – Last but definitely not least. Every goal must have an end point, a time frame that you are striving for. Never give up on your goal as you don’t know how close you are. Magic happens in the final moments of your goal deadline.

To finish off make sure you right all your goals in the present tense, like you have already achieved them. The subconscious mind cannot decipher between now and the future so it will just keep striving for the goal until you attain it. Also its important to write your goal with positive language – no don’ts or cant’s etc

Here is a great exampleof a goal, i have used finance because it is easier to display what i mean:

It is now Dec 31st 2010 and i am so happy and grateful to be looking at my yearly bank statement and see that the closing balance says i have $100k in my account. I am off to the travel agent to book my overseas holiday… woohoo!

Happy goal setting everyone – be sure to let me know what your 2010 goal is 🙂

Cheers,

Matt

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findmattjones.com is a blog website aimed at those interested in personally developing themselves to achieve greater financial freedom enabling them to find their true purpose in life. In this blog you will find personal experiences and ideas from Matt and his own quest for financial freedom.

Matt worked in the theatre industry as a lighting technician for over 15 years. Although the work was satisfying and allowed him to explore his creative talents, Matt was ruled by the need to swap his time for money to survive.

In 2005, Matt quit the theatre industry to educate himself in property investing and personal development. Since then has created his own property networking group that has over 200 members and now invests full time in property and internet marketing.

On his journey from paid employee to entrepreneur, Matt has discovered that personally developing himself and creating a winning mindset was critical to achieving any and all of his dreams and goals.

This blog is dedicated to sharing the pathway to those hopes and dreams.