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Change your life

Our Education System Sucks!

The whole education thing makes me really angry.

I was lucky enough to have a really ‘good’, really expensive education. And on the whole I enjoyed being in school.

But through all those years I never once received any learning in any of the subjects that could have been really useful to me now:

Running a business

Understanding cashflow

Profit and loss

Hey, even just understanding and managing money!

Even if you do nothing with your life, you are going to need to know how to manage your dole money, surely?

And yet, even now, still there is no teaching in vital life subjects.

Admittedly I use my Maths learnings almost every day – percentages, fractions, the basic stuff. I have never, ever used most of the more complicated Maths that I struggled to learn.

So surely it would have made sense to swop something like Algebra for basic business studies?

Well, no.

Our education system was designed by the Victorian masters, the subjects selected to be those that would produce good employees, well-trained and hardworking with just enough knowledge to be useful but not so much that they would become dangerous.

Our education system continues to pour out employees. Taught by employees following a government testing system which ticks the boxes of chosen knowledge.

I believe our education system is failing many of our young people. It churns them out without the hope, purpose or skills to make a success of their lives. It fails to equip them and so it almost guarantees their failures long before they leave school.

If they are lucky their parents might teach them how to make money. If they’re really lucky they might teach them how to keep it.

More likely the parents are struggling just like their children are doomed to, forever locked in a cycle of never having quite enough, buying liabilities or getting scammed because they don’t understand money and profit, spiralling ever downwards through stress.

Who carries the burden of this shame? Anyone in power who does not force change. And I do appreciate how hard change is to create, but where is the education about this?

This clip basically sums it up. I do hope and pray that things will change, one day.

 

 

Change your life Exante diet The Eternal Weight Battle! Weight loss

The Long Weight

So yesterday, quite unexpectedly, something amazing happened.

Not world peace – sorry – in fact, nothing that momentous. But I did manage to stick to a diet for a whole 24 hours!

So, just a bit of background – I’ve always had what you might call a ‘minor argument’ with my weight – no battling gone on here! I knew that my erratic lifestyle with constant travelling and a total lack of routine wasn’t helping. Then In 2015 I lost loads of weight through the Cambridge Weight Plan, which was fantastic.

Slowly but steadily I ate it all back on and then two years later I discovered the Exante Diet. It was a cheaper alternative and for me it worked much better, mostly because the products are ordered online and come direct to your home With Cambridge you have to buy through a consultant who will also insist on weighing you. I found this slightly humiliating and there was just something that jarred for me on not being in control – although it does work for lots of people.

After discovering Exante I knew this was a great opportunity and last year set myself the goal to lose 44lbs at the age of 44.

I got halfway before falling off the wagon… and ever since then I’ve struggled to get back on. Subscribers to my Youtube channel will be aware of just how many attempts I’ve made and how many times I’ve then disappeared in shame.

But, it is now the middle of May 2018 and after six months spending long days sitting in front of the computer building our business I am in crisis – I literally have nothing to wear! I’m squeezing out of everything and I can’t afford nor do I want to buy more clothes! I’ve been feeling enormous and I’ve started to dread people taking photos of me.

We hired T to begin to manage the business and the bathrooms, leaving me to do the networking and being ‘the face’ of the business – so the least I can do is look halfway decent when I’m there.

Literally, this has become an emergency!

If I am to make a Success of my Life then that HAS to include my health and fitness.

So, back on Exante it is (I still happen to have a cupboard full of products so there is NO excuse) but I’ve struggled so many times to even make it halfway through day one. Yesterday, though, by some extreme freak event, I did manage it.

I weighed in at 13 stone 7lbs (189lbs) yesterday morning and this morning I’m an incredible 13 stone 2 lbs (although my scales are unreliable but, hey, any encouragement is a positive!)

So, we’ll see how far I get this time. My 45lbs weight reduction goal would take me down to about 10 stone 5 (145lbs) which may not be realistic but even around 11 stone (154lbs) would be fantastic.

And although posting it all over the internet and TO PEOPLE I ACTUALLY KNOW is the FREAKIEST thing ever, sometimes you’ve got to get the big guns out.

Here’s yesterday’s video (and you wouldn’t believe the lovely messages I’ve received from people. The internet is truly a wonderful thing!)

xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attitude of Gratitude Attracting Success Change your life Law of Attraction Positive action

Take the baby steps

This beautiful message popped up on my Twitter the other day and I had to share it here.

 

The poster was @mikedooley who I think appeared in the film The Secret (if you haven’t seen it, do!)

Since Dean and I started on our journey to taking control of our lives and creating wealth, we’ve taken steps every day. Sometimes those steps have been strides, mostly they’ve been the babiest of baby steps.

But I have to confirm that what it says in the last paragraph is true.

“Take the baby steps, they summon angels, unleash energies”

OK, I don’t know much about angels, but so many amazing things have happened since we started, that I have to agree 100% that energies have been unleashed, and continue to be unleashed more and more every day.

Doors have opened for us, coincidences have made connections, necessary, helpful, people have come into our lives.

All this is of course just a natural result of taking action and getting out there, meeting people, networking and just being in the world of business.

But some things have been – more.

Our move to the other side of the country definitely unleashed an energy which I am glad to say we grasped with both hands. Since then I have never felt more aware of another force pushing and driving us forward.

Is it God? The Universe? Natural energy? I don’t know. I do know I love it!

(I really hope we don’t waste it and mess up.)

The message, whoever it is coming from, is that it really doesn’t matter what size steps we take, we just have to keep on moving. Big strides or baby steps, it doesn’t matter. Just keep heading forward, and the energies will help make it happen.

In other words, take the baby steps – and the rest will follow!

With big love and thanks to the powerful energies that are surrounding us right now.

 

 

 

Change your life Property Renovation

It couldn’t get much worse…

At least, just when I think it can’t get much worse, it usually does.

We are renovating, an old, old property, owned by members of the family, and right now, it would be fair to say I dislike this property, intensely!

It is our second project with them, so our second joint venture (JV). The first is now a beautiful three-bedroom home, let to a sweet family and the rental income is split between us and our JV partners. Every month I pay our portion into a separate bank account and pay all household bills as they come in, so in effect we live for free.

Nearly two and a half years ago Dean and I left our home and lives and moved across the country to do these two projects. The plan was we would renovate them, sell them and split the profit, allowing us to move back home.

Which would have all worked out, had we not decided to settle here. What actually happened was we completed the first property on time and on budget 18 months ago, but the second, which we’ve been living in, was a long way from being finished. I feel like I’ve been camping ever since.

By not selling up we ran out of money and had to prioritise building the business. Even so, we haven’t made enough profit to fund a full renovation, so we sold our old home, partly to fund this project, partly just because it was the right thing to do.

Life in a renovation pit can be pretty grim.

But since October, when we finally made the decision to just… DO IT, it’s all gone a bit beyond grim.

We started with the new gas connection and boiler and boy am I glad we did – it’s been so cold recently we would have been miserable without heating.

But although I know that with each project we edge closer and closer to completion, this place is really stretching my patience.

We currently all live on the second floor, which is finished and carpeted, sharing the en suite in Sam’s room. On the first floor is an empty shell that will one day be a bathroom, I hope. There’s my office, covered in a thin layer of greasy, filthy dust. There’s one other bedroom, in which my clothes languish in a wardrobe I can’t reach because it’s become an inpromptu workshop and there’s a flat pack kitchen leaning against the doors.

On the ground floor, it’s as close to misery as even misery herself dares to admit.

The kitchen we’ve stripped back, even beyond the old stone wall, as we’ve had to prop the space with steel RSJs and columns to support the weight of the floor. This week, the kitchen is being plastered. The outside walls have been stripped of all cement, to enable a water barrier and insulated boards to be placed against them to stop damp.

The entire room is a hovel of filth, dirt and dust.

The space you would laughingly call a living room is basically a storage corridor for plasterboards and insulated boards. And the cold, leaking conservatory is where we have stored our kitchen. We are using the small sink in the utility room as our only water and washing source and boy is it grim in there.

I’ve lived in renovation projects before and every time I say ‘never again’. This time, I truly mean it though.

This house, more than any other, has come the closest to pushing me over the edge.

On the other hand, this is the house that we will get the biggest return on. This is the project that could send us forward more than any other has done before.

So I’m hanging on in there, with gritted teeth and dirty, frozen fingers. I’m promising the poor bewildered dogs that this isn’t for ever, that they will have rooms they can walk across again without having to go around tools, plasterboards, piled up furniture. I’m telling us all it will be worthwhile and I’m trying to remember to be grateful for this amazing opportunity.

I don’t think we will have a kitchen in time for Christmas but we may have a bathroom and that would be pretty spectacular.

Just hanging on in there, hanging on, keeping my eyes on the goal!

 

Change your life Change your Mindset Habits of Success Positive action

Is it too late to change my life?

I’m in my forties. In my FREAKING FORTIES.

Somewhere, in my murky past, four decades have sped by. I’ve achieved some things – had a reasonable career, bought some property, had a lot of fun – but nothing of any particular note.

So now I’m in my FREAKING FORTIES and I’m changing my life the doubts creep in. On a fairly regular basis.

What makes you think you can make it now when you haven’t so far?

What makes you think anyone is interested in you?

You’re so old. How are you going to be successful at this age? If it was going to happen it would have happened already.

The good news is we finally have a bathroom floor here in our renovation pit, so if I choose to listen to these voices at least I have something clean to lie on in my defeated depression.

The really good news is I just watched this video by Nas Daily, about four people who did change their lives. Including one amazing guy who learned to read aged 52!

So every now again when the doubts get a bit too loud a good video can drown them out.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

Business success Change your life Goal setting Habits of Success

October Goals!

It’s October! Suddenly the summer has come crashing to an end and the year is starting to feel old without anyone really realising.

On one hand I am horrified at how fast the year is speeding past, on the other, the start of a new month means the opportunity to start afresh, to set targets and goals.

I set goals back in August, and then failed to do pretty much all of them except for the ones that involved setting up our new business. But that was pretty all-encompassing and now, with each passing day, there is less to do than there was, so I feel I am starting to get some time back during the day.

So here are my goals for October 2017, to be renewed and re-set in November.

Weight reduction, fitness and exercise goals…

Business goals…

And these are minimum gals, I am kinda hoping to smash ’em!

I am already looking forward to checking in on my progress at the start of November!

Buy to Let Change your Mindset Positive Thinking Progressive Property Property Time Efficiency

A Wasted Journey… almost

So it could have been infuriating.

On Wednesday night Dean and I left Cumbria for the 223-mile journey down to Peterborough.

We were due on the Joint Venture course at Progressive Property*. Two whole days of learning how to work with investors – which agreements to use, how to ensure we stay well within the law and within agreements that will work for us, any potential investors and everyone else.

Wednesday was a crazy day. Hey, every day is crazy for us!

My parents have come to stay for a month (I enrolled them in Sam-and-dog-sitting some weeks ago), and just before they arrived Dean decided to take down a wall and the old ceiling in their en suite. Then he found the existing shower was faulty. Then, both jobs we had ongoing developed unexpected issues. So, everything fell behind schedule and when my parents arrived, wearily stepping into the house after a long, long drive, the room was still filthy and full of tools and Dean was flustered and busy with hours ahead.

Naturally, one of our neighbours/friends who has been incredibly supportive then called to say her bath was leaking into the floor below.

It was also enrolment night for Sam at his new college course.

We had an appointment booked with potential bathroom clients which I had provisionally aimed at approximately 5.30pm.

So the plan was to casually swan off, all ready and prepared at 4.30pm, pop into college with Sam, then leave him settling in with all his new friends and with money to take the train home while we headed south, via the potential clients.

Of course that didn’t happen!

At 4pm, with Dean still hard at work, I took my mum and the dogs up to the field so she could see what to do when it came to walking them.

At 4.50pm I took Sam into college, he enrolled, but of course we couldn’t leave him, they needed to speak to me. Apparently adults are still responsible for young people, even once they have reached the dizzy age of 16!

Dean and I finally left at 6.30pm, got to the friend/neighbour’s who had by then gone out, we made it to the client’s house at 7pm – they want to go ahead, which is good news – and eventually set off on the long road south at 8 pm.

And then came the final disaster. As we neared the final 90 minutes of the journey, the A1 was closed with a diversion in place. It took us on a wide tour of central England, a long line of diverted traffic crawling through sleeping villages and past dark farms, as we argued over whether we should stick to the diversion or follow a different route using our phones. It was well past midnight by the time we got to the hotel and entered our stale smoke-filled room. The mattress was pretty lumpy and uncomfortable – a little like a water bed, wobbling every time one of us moved.

We arrived at Progressive Property towers just before 9;30am on Thursday feeling absolutely shattered. Even through my exhaustion I sensed something was wrong when I saw the small group of peple gathered there, with trainers I recognised from a different course – I’ve done plenty of courses at Progressive, I usually can’t recommend them highly enough.

My sinking feeling turned out to be right. The course had been cancelled some weeks earlier and for some reason I was never notified. It was pretty mortifying after the long drive and the cost of the fuel, hotel and, most importantly, our TIME.

But, it was my own fault for not checking and, with the benefit of hindsight, it seems extremely stupid to have set off for such a long way without double checking the event was still on. (In my defense, all the courses I’ve attended previously at Progressive Property have all run as planned, in fact they’ve all without fail been absolutely superb learning.)

We returned to the hotel in a disappointed daze, gutted to have wasted so much time, but determined to make the best of it that we could. We popped to the shopping centre next to the hotel and bought some new shirts for Dean (he was a man in desperate need of a few shirts!) Then we set  off for home feeling shattered and resentful and dreaming of the wonderful sleep we would have had that night if we were at home. As Dean drove, I leaned against my pillow and tried – failed – to sleep.

And then, something miraculous happpened. From somewhere came a second burst of energy, and we started talking about the property we’re living in, the one we’ve been considering turning into a house of multiple occupancy – an HMO.

We priced up pretty much the entire work needed, something we’ve been planning to do for ages. If the sums don’t work, we won’t do the work needed to create the HMO, so this was crucial.

We also stopped at a few kitchen places on our way back up north.

It meant that once we arrived back at home, to two delighted dogs and three bemused humans, we could begin a serious discussion about what to do with the property. And so the decision was reached. There will be no HMO. Instead we will renovate to a high standard, ready for a family home, and either let it or sell it as such.

The work needed to make this old, slightly awkward property into a 5-bed, 5-en suite HMO is just too much and too expensive. It would take every penny that we have, and it would take forever. And right now we need to keep hold of some money, and we need as soon as possible to be able to concentrate 100% on the business.

And although I’d been looking forward to putting an HMO together, it is a relief to have finally made a decision. Now we can move forward, get it done, and get back to business.

I would have preferred not to spend hours in the van, traipsing for miles through the dark, not really sleeping on a dodgy mattress, and losing a day’s work.

But by deciding not to let the day be a waste, we turned something that could have been really negative into a positive, and that was definitey worth doing.

(Oh, and Progressive have offered to reimburse what we’ve spent and they’ve given us a choice of dates to attend the next course, so we will be back – although we might change hotel.)

 

*Progressive Property is probably the UK’s biggest and best property success story, started by two friends and colleagues, Rob Moore and Mark Homer, and offering fantastic training into how to make money from property. Their courses are awesome (we’ve been on loads of them) and it all starts at their Multiple Streams of Property Income course (MSOPI) which is a 3-day course all about property. Tickets usually cost a few hundred pounds but they are free if you get referred from someone else – if you would like free tickets email me at projectlifesuccess@gmail.com and I will make sure you get yours!

Affirmations Change your life Exante diet Habits of Success Positive action Self-Discipline The Eternal Weight Battle! Weight loss

Worth the Weight

I didn’t want to say anything too early, but I’ve just completed my first week back on the fantastic Exante Diet.

As part of my Project to develop a Successful Life, I am determined to make achieving a healthy weight a big part of it. And at the grand old age of 44, I decided to set my target at a reduction of 44lbs.

I lost 22 of those lbs a few months ago, documenting my progress on my YouTube channel. And then I lost focus and decided I would maintain for a while – yeah right – and got back into eating my own body weight on a regular basis, gaining 10 of those lbs back.

Plus, I’ve been so busy recently getting the business ready that I’ve almost forgotten what exercise is. Literally, hours of sitting at the computer, writing copy for the website, writing contracts, writing blog posts – or not! Even dog walks have been down to the bear minimum.

Last Sunday I woke up and just decided it was just time to get back on the Exante diet wagon. One of those unexpected but agreeable decisions that come from the feeling ‘enough is enough’.

This time, I decided I would record not just my weekly progress but daily – every mealtime in fact. That’s quite a commitment, as I discovered!

It’s also quite a lot of footage! Too much for one film! So I split the week into two – this is the first film covering Days 1-3:

The week ended on a real high at my weigh-in this morning with 6.5lbs gone – half a lb off half a stone!

Needless to say I feel so much better already – my stomach is flat(tish), I have more energy and my clothes are fitting more loosely.

Returning to the Exante products has literally been like meeting old friends again! Why I didn’t keep it going while ‘maintaining’ I will never know – I really could have replaced one meal every day with a product and that would have helped. I know now that is what I need to do to maintain, once I achieve my healthy goal weight of 146 lbs (10 stone 6lbs).

So I finished the week with this film.

I’ve been doing some affirmations recently (if you don’t know what they are, check out this article which explains all about them and gives some good examples you can use).

I’ve been reminding myself that:

“I am strong, focused and self-disciplined” because these are three areas I figured I needed some reminding about.

This week, I’ve felt stronger, more focused and more self-disciplined than ever. I actually feel that I am going to get to goal, and I’ve never, ever felt that certainty before.

Many successful people swear by the power of affirmations, but I have to admit I’ve never done them rigidly enough before to give them chance to work.

Could it be that I am experiencing some of their magical effect?! Whatever it is, I like it!

 

 

 

 

Attracting Income Attracting Success Business success Change your life Change your Mindset Habits of Success Positive action Self-Discipline

What Makes A High Achiever?

Who even IS a high achiever?

It’s all relative, of course. Everyone is a high achiever to someone, the same way everyone is a lesser achiever to someone else (yet another reason why we should never judge ourselves against others).

Simply put, we’re all on our own journey, each with its own challenges and battles. What is easy to one person is tough to the next, and so on.

This is a great video for keeping you focused on your own journey.

Yes, it’s going to be tough. Yes there will be days you don’t want to get out of bed. Yes there will be jealousy along the way. Yes there will be people wanting to see you fall. Yes you will feel like stopping. Yes the world will assume things about you.

I say ‘you’ – but really, of course, I mean ‘me’. I totally, totally have areas of weakness, places where my inner high achiever struggles to beat the lazy scared person.

For one thing, I always find it so hard to get out of bed. Every. Fricking. Morning. And that’s one area I need to work on, to get up, earlier, get started faster, get off my phone go for the day harder.

As this video reminds me, just get out of bed. Just do it. Ignore the rest inside my own head and the heads of others, and DO IT.

Stepping above the rest is not easy. We must surround ourselves with people who also have vision and can see the possibilities for us all. Surround ourselves with other high achievers, and prepare to fight!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attracting Income Attracting Success Business success Habits of Success Self-Discipline

Self Discipline and Success

Self-control. Discipline. Determination.

It’s so easy to let things slip. A new workout regime, a new diet, new working habits, new focus – they’re all great at the start. (I’m talking from personal experience here, lots of it!)

And then, three weeks later, that fantastic new habit has fizzled out. And who do we blame?

I know I blame my lack of self-discipline. I blame my inherent weaknesses. My lack of focus. I tell myself, oh, it’s just the way I am, I guess.

Oh, what total crap!

In the words of Nike, sometimes we’ve got to Just Do It. And this video by InspireDiscipline is a hugely powerful message  for inspiring us to – just do it.

You can’t read the summary here and expect it to work, you need to take the 12 minutes or so and watch it. But here’s a basic guide to the lessons in this video:

  1. Think of something you really, really want, and be sure to engage with that dream every morning. Visualise it, think about it, focus on it.
  2. Work on your focus FIRST, before the chaos of emails, social media, snapchat and whatever hit you. Do your work first, the video advises, so you start your day right.
  3. Block your day out. Don’t leave your day open to randomness – plan your calendar so action is planned.
  4. This is where it gets fun… but you’ll have to watch the video to find out what it is!

Invest the next 12 minutes in yourself, and get ready for what InspireDiscipline calls ‘The Charged Life’.

To self-discipline!

 

 

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