3 Laws of Nature To Live By That Grow Your Business

In Creativity by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

For many, starting a lifestyle business can be a struggle. And if you go about it the wrong way, it can sometimes feel like you’re swimming upstream without a paddle. Eventually, this feeling can create resistance and cause you to procrastinate, feel disappointed, and even feel like giving up on your dream of building a business that provides you with more time and more freedom.

If you ever find yourself feeling this way, don’t worry. You’re not alone. Hundreds of thousands of successful business owners out there have faced and overcome this exact same struggle, myself included.

Which is how I know that this feeling of fighting the flow can be easily and effortlessly avoided altogether, when you learn how to leverage 3 simple laws of nature. And when you do, you will find yourself no longer going against the grain. Instead, things just work. No more struggle or resistance – just pure expansive freedom.

Of course, there are many wrong ways to run a business, but the good news is that you can correct most of these errors by living by these laws of nature and understanding that…

Nature wants to see your business grow.

Nature wants you to be successful, but it has nothing to do with you personally. The truth is, nature simply wants to see everything in the universe grow and thrive. And if you live your life and run your business according to the laws of nature, it will grow and you will succeed. Period.

And in order to embrace this new way of living and operating your business means being able to accept the first law of nature, which is to be able to …

1) Adapt To Change

Simply put, nature is change. Those who adapt to its changes thrive and those who do not are left behind. It’s nothing personal, it’s just business.

Adapting to change means being on the leading edge of what is happening in the market you operate in and being aware of the trends happening now. You become aware of the trends, only so you can take advantage of them when possible.

In order to do this you may need to shift your perspective. Try to think about market and social trends as obvious signs, which show you that there is something out there that people want and that nature needs someone to give it to them. It’s your job to be that person.

However, being able to adapt to change also means being able to roll with the punches and get back up after each unsuccessful venture. Which means accepting that failure is just a telltale sign that what you were doing before wasn’t in harmony with the laws of nature. And therefore you are saving yourself a lot of struggle down the road by adapting to a new way of doing things now.

Take every change that comes your way as a new opportunity to practice the second law of nature, which is to…

2) Always Add Value

The second law of nature to live by is to always add value. Nature has designed all of life to add value in one way or another. Plants create oxygen. People create carbon dioxide. Simply by existing, one adds value to the other.

So, if you want your business to succeed and be lifelike, it needs to do the same. And if you are in competition with another business that is providing a similar service or product as you, take the opportunity to differentiate yourself by adding more value. This means asking your customers what they want, so you can give it to them more effectively.

You must recognize that your customers are paying you because you add value to their lives. If you think that you are not being paid enough, it is only because you are either not adding enough value to the lives of your customers. Or you don’t show them how valuable what you have really is. Simple as that.

When you accept this simple truth you never have to worry about selling again. This is because selling is an exchange of energy. And when you are consciously adding value to the lives of others, you are giving them your energy and they are returning energy to you in the form of money. This is good, just and fair.

Furthermore, if you continue to add more value, to more people’s lives, more often – you will continue to make more money. And the more you scale this interaction, the more exponentially your business will grow.

Which leads us to the third law of nature to live by…

3) Be Expansive

The best way to grow your business is to always be expanding. Just like trees expand their branches to gather more sunlight, your business needs to always be expanding its branches to grow more exposure to potential prospects.

Of course, the best way to always be expanding is to continually create more value in the form of content. This is because the more content you make, the more people see your business and the more customers you will get. Blog posts, videos, ebooks, and audios are greats ways to create content which helps your business expand.

Something to keep in mind when making this content is that often times how expansive your business is, has a lot to do with how much value you are providing, and how many people you are providing it to. This is important to understand, because being expansive and creating content that adds value to the lives of others in a way that you get paid for it is the key to experiencing the lifestyle freedom you desire.

Eventually, when you have expanded enough, your business will be able to passively provide so much value to so many people, that it can never shut down.

By always expanding you are modeling the universe, because the universe itself is always expanding. And it doesn’t show any signs of stopping. So, why should your business?

Remember, nature favors those who adapt to its changes. People love and feel good about those who provide them value. And if you are always expanding, then you are always creating more life and opportunity for your business.

Which means, as long as you live by these 3 laws of nature, your success is inevitable.

3 Lessons From Theodore Roosevelt On Leaving Your Legacy

In Creativity by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

Theodore_Roosevelt_-_NARA_-_530950

Good morning and welcome to the rest of your life. Or at least, what’s left it.

Today, you’re going to do the same thing you’ve always been doing… leaving your legacy.

Except, today you’re going to do it differently.

Today, you’re going to do it better.

You see, every day you are busy making your legacy. You pen it with every demonstration of your character, and continue to smith it through every thought, uttered word and action.

The problem is, you haven’t been crafting a very inspiring legacy. No, not at all.

So, in an effort to properly mend your destiny and spare yourself a future of mediocrity, I want you to think about the word legacy and what it means to you.

Chances are, what comes to mind probably isn’t the legend of the complacent, passive, ‘let it be’ dude who floats through life like a plastic bag in the wind.

Hell no.

You should be thinking of the heroes of history. The champions of their era. The greats who rose above the challenges of their time and succeeded in the face of adversity. Those who left behind a timeless example for us all to follow in our own lives.

It’s important to read the legacies and journeys of these important men and women from history, because their stories clue us in on what to expect when crafting our own legacies. And in their stories lie lessons that we have the opportunity to internalize, and in doing so bypass their struggles in our own journeys.

For example, I’ll tell you the story of one hero of history, which is riddled with lessons and sets the bar very high for all for us all to rise to the occasion.

It’s the story of The Bull Moose: Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt.

If you’re unfamiliar with the legend of Theodore Roosevelt, then it’s important to know that he was born with debilitating asthma and was told as a child that he would never amount to anything. But instead of proving all those who would watch him fail right, the bucking Bull Moose conditioned his body by blood and steel to overcome this limitation, and went on to become the 26th President of the United States.

A fine start to his legacy, but Presidency was only the beginning of Teddy Roosevelt’s legend and ever-flexing bravado, which stands still etched in history as a testament to manliness in American folklore.

You see, during Teddy’s term he did not waste his opportunity to shake things up in the political world. And as in all things, he did this in his own way, which became known as Theodore Roosevelt’s ‘Big Stick Ideology.’ Which is simply to, ‘speak softly and carry a big stick,’ when handling foreign policy. Knowing that this was his methodology for life we can see that how the way one handles a single task, shines light on his character, which is then seen more clearly in the future.

In this case, Teddy Roosevelt’s reputation for being a bear-pelt wearing, big stick toting President was immortalized on the 12th October, 1912 when he was shot in the chest by an assassin in the middle of giving his campaign speech. Having been nearly assassinated several times before, Roosevelt handled this moment as gloriously as any man could by simply stating…

“Friends, I shall ask you to be as quiet as possible. I don’t know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose.”

And then he proceeded to give his lengthy, 90-minute long speech with a bullet in his beating chest.

It was later understood that the bullet passed through his 50-page speech pamphlet, which slowed the bullet and probably saved his life.

I love this story, because it encapsulates how a legend is born. Not by some easy fluke of chance, but by knowing what is right, what needs to be done, and carrying through with it even as your life-force is being brained from your body.

Though, creating your legacy need not be this extreme. In fact, I recommend you avoid any legacy that puts you in the line of gunfire. No, leaving your legacy can be a much simpler – requiring no extra effort than you normally put in. It just means changing a few aspects about how you live your life as Teddy taught us in his.

The first lesson is to overcome adversity through bullishness.

Sometimes we cannot gracefully float over our problems, as was the case with Teddy’s asthma. He had to train his body to become strong enough to live. And knowing that this was the only way, he what he did what he needed to do through sheer bullish willpower to become the legend he is today.

Second, set examples through your character for others to follow.

Every interaction you have with another being is an opportunity for you to act in accordance to your true character. Whether you ‘speak softly and carry a big stick’ like Roosevelt, or act in another way that better represents you, do act knowing that you are forging your legacy in the process.

And lastly, do what you set out to do, even if it is the last thing you will ever do.

Creating your legacy is arguably the most important thing you will ever do. And we all have to face the reality of our own untimely death at some point. However, if seen in the proper light, your own death should empower you with a sense of urgency to focus more fully on the task of crafting our legacy. And when you find yourself in the midst of doing the good work, like Theodore Roosevelt was on stage that day, finish what you started even if it’s the last thing you do.

With the ticking clock of your own yawning grave in your ears, I’ll end this with the words of another American hero, Benjamin Franklin who said it best, “If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”

So, friend… which one are you going to do?

10 Reasons Done Is Better Than Perfect

In Creativity by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

“Do not plan for ventures before finishing what’s at hand.” Euripides

Anyone who is assigned a project has a creative passion, or runs a business knows the struggle that is actually finishing what you’re working on. You know how easy it is to spend several long days followed by late nights on a project, and still not feel totally satisfied.

The reason for this is because you are chasing an idea of perfection that cannot be reached. At first, this feels like the well-placed desire to create something of quality, but when the project doesn’t end up representing your initial inspiration it’s easy to feel disappointed and demotivated.

However, when you try to live by the phrase ‘done is better than perfect,’ you will learn more than just how to finish your projects, but also discover several other virtues that will be crucial to your success in anything you do.

Below are 10 reasons why done is better than perfect:

  1. Self-Respect

The worst thing about not finishing the projects you start is that you will slowly stop expecting yourself to finish things after you begin them. This not only leads to a lack of overall results and output but also a lack of faith in yourself to follow through with what you say you’re going to do.

You’re only as good as your word, right?

  1. Positive Momentum

You can accomplish more than you ever imagined possible, when you have the strong breeze of positive momentum at your back. Each project you accomplish creates a positive momentum that will make everything that comes after easier, faster, and better.

This is why many authors say the second book is easier than the first, and before long they have a list of best-sellers.

  1. Publish For Feedback

If you start looking at your projects as experiments designed to gather feedback, you will no longer fear criticism. Everything you publish is only a draft, and you know that whatever comes of it will serve to make the next iteration better.

This is how the pros do more and get better each time.

  1. Nothing Is Perfect

In your mind, you have an idea of the perfect end result of what you’re working on. Usually, it’s based on the first spark of inspiration that motivated you to start the project, to begin with. But the truth is, you can never reach this idea of perfection because it doesn’t actually exist.

Art itself is never perfect, but the rendering always implies perfection. That’s what makes it beautiful and human. And when you learn how to accept and appreciate what is good about what you’ve created, your audience will be able to see it too.

  1. Settling For Mediocrity

At some point, you’re going to have to settle for mediocrity. You need to understand that your boss, your audience, and your customers will be seeing your work exactly as it is, and that’s a good thing. Because they see the faults you see in your own work.

They will experience what you’ve made subjectively, relate to it in their own way, and find qualities to appreciate in it you won’t be able to recognize yourself.

  1. If No One Sees It, It Doesn’t Exist

The struggle of chasing after perfection is the main reason why many of the world’s most talented people never get the recognition they deserve. You could be sitting on a masterpiece all your life, but if you never get it into a beta form and put it out into the world, no one will ever be able to know about it. And what good does that do anyone?

Plus, if you get it to a place where others can experience your work, they may be able to help you get the resources you need to accomplish the full vision you have for your project.

  1. Create A Body Of Work

When you create often enough you will reach an effortless state of output, which will allow you to imbue your projects with an essence of authenticity. And because of this your audience, whoever they happen to be, will feel feel more connected to you as they pour over your body of work.

Plus, you never know which creation will be your best work yet. So, keep putting them out with equal effort and consideration. Then, your audience’s feedback will guide you towards your magnum opus.

  1. The First Version Always Sucks

Just accept it, the first version always sucks. Think about all the platinum selling musicians whose first albums were terrible. And try to imagine all the first drafts of books that went on to be bestsellers.

No one talks about the first drafts, but they are always necessary. The first versions of anything you do will help you refine your work to the place where it will eventually provide massive value and be loved by others.

  1. It’s Time To Move On

When you find yourself drained from working on the same project for far too long, then you know it’s time to end it and move on. Everyone knows that it’s easiest to do the work for anything when you’re inspired to do so. But if you’re still backlogged and working on things that inspired you weeks ago, you don’t leave space for inspiration to strike.

So, set aside some time now, finish the project and move on, because bigger and better things are waiting. And by practicing finishing what you begin, you’ll be able to honor the inspirations that come with completion.

  1. Be Unattached To the Results

The master level of anything you want to do is to always be in the flow of creative output. And the only way to reach this level of flow is to develop the habit of finishing what you start without attachment to the results.

You learn to do the work because you love the process, and eventually you will get the results you desire. But when the results come they won’t phase you, because you know that they’re just inspiration for what comes next.

Let these virtues guide you to success and remember: learning to finish your projects is a muscle. And the only way to build it is to exercise it more often.

So, what are you going to go finish?

Phobos

In Flash Fiction by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

“They say God lives in us all…” Jacob began, trembling.

“But the only God I’ve met within was fear…. His dark cloud, sinister and serpentine… coiled and constricting my every thought.

And by choice I pray at his alter of worry. I sacrifice every possibility of a better life to him to keep him fed.”

From Another World

In Flash Fiction by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

Tim and Jeremy had been friends since grade school and were always together. Playing games, reading comics and going on hikes in the forest by their cul-de-sac. Which is why, it comes as no surprise they were out there that day. It was fate that they would be the first to make contact.

Autumn Father

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He saw his father again that autumn.

It was a vibrant evening, alit with the colors of change. They passed one another on that same street as before, except this time as equals—as men—but the past was too loud for them to speak.

So both kept on their paths, which forked long ago.

Cannot Compute

In Flash Fiction by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

checking for consciousness of James McElroy… configure: error: in `/home/menu/JamesMcElroy/spirit/consciousness.log’:
configure: error: cannot compute
thought files: cannot compile
See `consciousness.log’ for more details.
make[2]: *** [configure-consciousness1-target-home] Error 1
make[2]: Leaving directory `/home/menu/JE/consciousness’
function[1] Self-delete initiated.
configure: success: computing…
File: Consciousness.JamesMcElroy is deleted.

Faith Machine

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The lights of the skyscaper decorated the modern altar. The people there prayed with time, with dollars, and with belief. Each spin of the revolving doors like the lever on an engine of faith.

This new god was not a jealous god. Nor did it force itself upon them.

It was the god they chose.

Black Armor

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The sun hid and withdrew its light the day he stepped boldly onto the battlefield. His black armor reflected only shadow as he strode toward the enemy encampment.

His pupils dilated and merged with the whites, like black ink staining silk, and he saw it all. The warhorses, catapults, mercenaries, soldiers—unknowingly waiting to die.

Romantiminute

In Flash Fiction by coltonswabbLeave a Comment

Our unhinging hearts swing wide and far. The light bleeding from behind their protective gates unite like outstretched hands and melt together without seems.

No end to you. No beginning to me. Whole us. Part you and part me.

And then disconnecting as you walk past me, unblinking and making your way down the street.