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Entrepreneurs See Opportunity Addressing Consumer Demand for Pesticide-Free Cannabis




Health concerns about pesticide and herbicide contamination of smoked marijuana go back a long time. The use of paraquat, banned from national forests in 1983 because of environmental concerns, was given the go-ahead to be sprayed for marijuana eradication on private property, but not on public lands, as early as 1988.

The debate over herbicide and pesticide contamination of legal marijuana, however, began in 2012. During that year, the State of Colorado found that cannabis was being grown with pesticides, but could not receive guidance from the federal government due to marijuana’s federal illegality. With growers voicing fierce opposition to any changes to the decontamination process for removing pesticide residues, the state gave inspections a low priority. The status quo has remained in Colorado ever since.

Entrepreneurs have come to bear the brunt of that market, as some choose to invest into pesticide removal processes while others continue their manufacturing without incorporating a cleaning method. And they’re up against big bucks with mainstream brands like Scotts Miracle Grow are predicted to be some of the >hottest cannabis stocks on the market.

Some manufacturers have pivoted to become strictly “cleaning” services, wherein they wash other manufacturers’ crude oil of pesticide and return it to them for further distillation and placement. While these entrepreneurs have had some success, a good amount of large manufacturers have still stuck to their guns producing a legacy product that may create issues down the line for consumers. As a result, retailers are now at risk of facing legal action, like in the case of Livwell, a company being sued for its’ use of the pesticide Eagle 20, a pesticide.

Fast forward four years and the City of Seattle issues an advisory to alert consumers of the potential of risk of pesticide ingestion when inhaling cannabis. The city was unable to issue a more definitive statement or change in policy due to the lack of research on inhalation of pesticides.

Related: 9 Business Ideas for People Looking to Cash in on the Marijuana Boom

The State of Oregon recently counted 900 failures of pesticide removal from cannabis. In one instance, 370 batches of product were recalled from consumers due to excessive levels of pesticide. In this case, Oregon issued a letter reminding growers of the state’s Pesticide Control Act and also promised to investigate growers who failed pesticide screenings.

This is happening all across North America. Even though it’s federally licensed, Canadian cannabis company OrganiGram Holdings was caught up in two Health Canada recalls of almost all its products sold in 2016 after residual levels of two banned pesticides, myclobutanil and bifenazate, were found. The company’s organic certification was suspended until compliance to requirements was demonstrated. OrganiGram took remedial measures to rectify the problems, but was left with a year’s worth of lost revenues.

Getting better, right? Not so fast.

2017 has been a tough year for California as the state gears up for recreational cannabis. Steep Hill Labs, a premier lab testing facility in Berkeley, identified at least 84 percent of plants in a sample were contaminated with high levels of pesticide, including Eagle 20. Remember that name from earlier?

Eagle 20 is the brand name of a chemical called Myclobutanil, which is produced by Dow Chemical. The problem with this becomes larger when thinking about the scale of the California cannabis industry. Most crops are derived from clones — those clones have mother plants, and if those mother plants are pesticide-ridden, the effects are being multiplied by an exponential factor.

Myclobutanil is used to kill pests and prevent mildew, but when combusted, it turns into hydrogen cyanide, which affects the brain and lungs and is lethal in high doses. While the U.S.DA tests edible plants for Myclobutanil, there is no such regulatory practice in California for cannabis until 2018.

Related: New Jersey Likely to Elect a Governor Determined to Legalize Marijuana

What should we know?

Let’s break it down. Pesticides are prevalent in nearly everything, from food products to household cleaners. The EPA and U.S.DA have developed a framework for identifying and allowing certain pesticides in products, however, the base research does not include inhalation. This presents a unique window into the world of the consumer.

Since most consumers are unaware of pesticides or choose to ignore their presence in cannabis, companies have had made short work of selling status-quo enabled products. Most manufacturers are focused on removing any plant material aside from THC and achieving the highest possible potency, and as a result, pesticides have flown under the radar. Consumers are generally happy with the end result, not taking into account pesticides.

As recreational cannabis moves forward in 2018, the California Bureau of Cannabis Control has teamed with other organizations to clamp down on the use of pesticides and their proliferation in cannabis products. Now, consumers will be made aware of pesticides, any company who sells pesticide products will have their products recalled, and people will demand a pesticide-free product as the status quo. So, it’s important that consumers begin to understand what is in their product and demand innovation now.

“It’s imperative that the standards for pesticide use in cannabis production follow the same critical regulations that are set for our food crops to ensure a safe product for the consumer and environment,” I was told in an interview with Phil Guardia, CEO of Kelmar Cultivation Products. His flourishing 50-year old agriculture supply company is venturing into the cannabis space.

Related: A University in Michigan Is Offering a Bachelor Degree for Marijuana Entrepreneurs

So what’s actually in the cannabis?

The list is long and very hard to pronounce, but it goes something like this. Myclobutanil (Eagle 20., Spinosad, Piperonyl Butoxide, Spiromesifen, Bifenazate, Abamectin, Imidacloprid, Carbaryl, and Etoxazole. Take note of the second to last chemical, Carbaryl — in a lab test, it was detected in cannabis at 415 parts per million, far higher than a much more common product, blueberries, whose tolerance is at a mere three PPM.

That discrepancy highlights two problems.

  1. Overuse of pesticides on cannabis plants by growers who are keen to keep their plants free of mites and mold, and
  2. Inadvertent re-concentration of pesticide by cannabis manufacturers’ into their end-product, which is then either packaged into raw material for edible companies or turned into high-THC concentrate.

We know that in some cases, cannabis manufacturers are able to “wash” their flowers of pesticides during the extraction process, but we also know that a trace amount of pesticide can remain. This trace pesticide can re-concentrate itself during the following purification and distillation process if not “cleaned” correctly, creating another scenario where people are consuming high-PPM amounts of pesticide.

Both possibilities are scary, in what we know and don’t know. We know ingesting pesticides beyond the recommended PPM limit is dangerous, but we don’t know what happens when pesticides are inhaled, and more experts are saying the latter is very concerning.

Related: Cannabis Industry Rallies to Overcome Unique Legal Barriers to Recovery From Northern California Fires

What should we do?

Two things need to happen in the very near future.

As cannabis becomes regulated in more states, governments need to develop regulations for growers and manufacturers, and consumers must demand a pesticide-free product. In the first scenario, while governments develop procedures to curtail and regulate the use of pesticides in cannabis, growers and manufacturers must also take steps to meet policy changes.

While some growers are content with the status quo, options are available to shift best practices toward pesticide-free cultivation and pesticide removal in manufacturing. Using natural substances like neem oil and compost, in addition to good ventilation systems and dehumidifiers, can aid in growth of pesticide-free plants. As manufacturers also adapt to the system, they must either push their network to produce pesticide-free plants or create standard processes to remove pesticides to an appropriate, regulated level.

“Cannabis is a technical crop that requires constant grower attention. Up-to-date knowledge of items such as irrigation, air flow, lighting and nutrients etc is critical to produce a safe and efficient crop,” Guardia told me, explaining how manufacturers have no choice but to become compliant. “The old school way of growing will not work in order to legitimize the safety of the crop and the industry as we move forward.”

While innovations like flash chromatography and solvent chemicals have proven effective in cleaning up concentrated product, and some companies are experimenting with other during their process to produce a clean product for consumers, the entire industry must drive change. From edibles to flowers to dabs, every step of the supply chain should be educated and pushing for pesticide-free product in order to keep cannabis safe.

Related: Survey: A Quarter of Cancer Patients Use Legal Medical Marijuana.

How are cannabis entrepreneurs responding?

Some small cannabis growers are fighting costly requirements and offering solutions. “We are rural and agricultural,” one West Massachusetts farmer told his local legislators. “In Western Massachusetts, we voted at a higher percentage to allow this new industry and provide new economic development opportunities for ourselves and our children,” Nicholas Robinson said.

These opportunities need to have low capital requirements for small business entrepreneurs to obtain the necessary licenses and meet the proper standards. Non-organic pesticides can be effective that way. “There should be more cultivation and more manufacturing west of Worcester and on the Cape. We should allow non-brick and mortar entities and delivery services,” Robinson envisioned.

Some manufacturers are simply innovating better and more effective ways to create the purest of products. Started in March of this year, premier cannabis oil producer Medusa Labs is removing additives such as PG and PEG from their flavors in a series of changes aimed at promoting a purer product. “We source pesticide-free crude oil and are promoting practices to reduce pesticides to minimal levels in our high-potency THC distillate,” Sean Gee, CEO of Medusa Labs explained to me at a recent cannabis meetup.

“During our uniquely proprietary distillation process, we carefully check temperatures and add organic compounds to ensure we end up with the highest grade product devoid of substances like chlorophyll, azulene, and residual solvents,” Gee continued. “At certain points, these can turn into distasteful flavonoids and harmful carcinogens, and result in a lower potency.”

Related: Colorado Study Links Marijuana Legalization to Decline In Fatal Opioid Overdoses

Still, some big brands are still selling vape pens with pesticides and/or additives with or without knowledge or proper testing. Other pesticide-regulation recalcitrant or otherwise simply unfortunate cannabis producers are likely to face warnings, recalls, or even bad mojo in what’s a tight cannabis industry fellowship.

This inconsistency creates broad opportunities for the kosher cannabis entrepreneur to introduce new sets of ideas with a focus on greater and greater product innovation.

“I have been a retailer to the cannabis industry in Colorado since 2009,” Joe Barnes, president of GrowLife Hydroponics Inc., told me in a written interview. “The requests we have received for products proven to cause damage have always troubled me — especially for medical patients whose immune systems may already be compromised.”

In reality illegal operations have only one reason to grow — to make money, and Barnes believes without these new, emerging we would see an epidemic of throat and lung issues on a large scale over the coming years.

Third-party testing will be a major part of the industry moving forward on the right foot. Proprietors of independent third-party certification labs have an opening in legal cannabis — another example of legalizing marijuana creatine unexpected business opportunities.

As the cannabis market grows and along with it brings tighter standards and enforcement for testing, there’s no doubt that there’ll be more need for testing services. Not to mention the anticipated transition of labs that are now servicing traditional agriculture cross into cannabis as the market opens.

Josh Wurzer, president of SC Labs remarked, “I was leery about working for a medical marijuana lab, but now I think it’s a great career choice for people coming out of school with technical degrees because it supports a product that’s behind the fastest-growing industry in America.”

A daily source of inspiration and information, fuels the spectrum of game-changers that define what it means to be an entrepreneur today. That includes business leaders who launched something from nothing, content creators in the social influencer space, athletes pushing the boundaries of performance, and internal thought leaders innovating inside major corporations. offers strategic insights and how-to guidance for the people that make things happen.



You Don't Have to Pay Your Dues Before You Start a Business




My job consists of building cool stuff, helping people build apps and helping startups grow and scale. This means I field a lot of questions and hear a ton of startup ideas.

One day, an impressive young entrepreneur came to me with an interesting idea. It sounded promising, so I thought he should go for it. He did, and found a gaping hole in his local market. As any good entrepreneur would do, he went in full-force to exploit it. The idea was solid, he was able to validate it and went to build.

Related: Avoid These 5 Early Mistakes I Made as an Entrepreneur

But before he got started, he wanted to incorporate. This is a great idea. It helps protect your personal assets if something goes wrong. It can help you with taxes depending on where you are and honestly, it helps make you look professional if you are in the B2B, consulting or services spaces. It’s quick and easy, and you can get it done for a small fee in a few dozen places online.

Lucky for this young hustler, he had a family friend who was a lawyer. Time to save some cash and get some expert advice in the process, right? Sadly, that’s not what happened. Instead, my young student got an earful of horrible advice that put him down and out. “You’re in high school. You’re too young for this. Focus on getting into a good college, work hard, get a job, then start this business.”

That pissed me off.

The opportunity was right in front of him. There’s no law saying a high school student can’t start a business and make money. There’s no rule that says you can’t have an app and get into a good college. The time to do this was now — when there was a gap in the market, and he was in the best position to fill it.

Related: 8 Tips for Entrepreneurial High School Students Ready to Start Their First Businesses

When I was in high school, I ran a business with one of my buddies selling bootlegged anime. I didn’t know that was legally frowned upon at the time, I promise. When I was in college, I started a web development agency and a SaaS company, which I later sold.

I didn’t wait to start those companies because someone told me I was young and inexperienced. I didn’t put my dreams on pause to get good grades and an entry-level job. I didn’t want to wait and pay my dues. I knew I had a skill that others were willing to pay for, and I offered my services to them. Funny thing is, my customers didn’t seem to care that I was still a student with no real job experience.

Does that sound like “skipping to the front of the line?” It should, because it is.

There were definitely people doing what I was doing, and doing it better, but I was competing on their level. And I didn’t work my way up for 10 years before I started. I built my empire one client at a time. And I’m definitely not alone.

So why do authority figures — I’m talking parents, legal counsel, etc. — tell people to pay their dues so they can get a good job before they work on their real dreams? And then, focus on your job and do this entrepreneur thing on the side for a while to test the waters.

Building an app on the side when you have a job is a good idea. It’s called a “side hustle” and if you want to do it, do it. It’s a great way to transition out of your boring 9-5. And if you don’t want to go full time, it’s a great way to make some passive income on the side.

But if you’re a student, why not start your business right now? You’re in the perfect position with limited responsibilities and endless resources — resources to help you with business or technical challenges and tons of time to get some solid training on the internet. 

Related: 9 Million-Dollar Ideas You Can Launch From Your Dorm Room

So why wait to pay your dues before you find your success? Screw the old ways of the business world. Don’t wait for the world to give you permission. If you have an idea; if you have a dream; if you have the passion and the drive — do it.

Let them say “you can’t” right up to the day where they ask you “how did you do it?”

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5 Ways to Grow Your Side Hustle Into a Full-Time Income




When I was 12-years old, I begged my parents to loan me some money to start a business. I needed capital. Dial-up modems were still the norm and I needed to scoop up a 9600 bps modem (blazing fast at the time). I also needed to run eight phone lines to the house to setup my internet chat board.

Well, the phone company came out, drilled across our street and ran a huge pipeline to our home so that we could support the additional lines. It cost my parents a small fortune at the time. Plus all the hardware I needed to make this whole thing a reality. But, I was a technical kid. An engineer in the making, if you will.

Long story short, that business never made money. But, it was my first foray into the world of side hustles. Sure, I was a kid. I didn’t know how to run a business. The lines were costing over $1,000 per month to support. Back then, that sure was a lot of money. I was only making roughly half that so I was constantly in the red.

Now, I didn’t know a thing about marketing back then. After all, I was just a kid. But, since then, I’ve learned a thing or two about making money online. I’ve also learned business basics, which is something I hadn’t quite mastered back then. But, if you’re struggling right now to find the time to grow your side hustle into a full-time gig, you can probably learn a thing or two from this post.

Over the years, I’ve managed to take several side hustles and turn them into passive income producing streams of revenue. However, you can’t do that when you exchange your time for money. I knew that. But, it was a trade-off. I’ve always been in the camp of doing lots of work in the front end for little pay, but reaping the benefits down the line when the same work you did one time continues to pay you repeatedly.

However, if you’re struggling to make ends meet, that might not be the path for you. But, either way you look at it, there are ways you can turn your side hustle into full-time, income-producing businesses. It’s simply a matter of identifying and scaling out the proper activities that bring you the biggest results. Here’s how you can do just that.

Related: 15 Easy Ways to Make Extra Money at Home

1. Effectively manage your time.

Okay. I know. It sounds pretty basic, right? But, how well are you managing your time? The truth is that most of us waste lots of time. When you waste time, you have less of it on things like growing your side hustle. The hard part? Being honest with yourself and just how you spend your time.

If you want to figure out where all the time is going, start logging all the time you spend. Chunk them into 15-minute or 30-minute intervals. Use the quadrant time management system. Simply categorize each of the types of activities that you did during that interval based on the following four quadrants:

  • Quadrant 1: Important and urgent crises that have to be handled in that very moment
  • Quadrant 2: Important but not urgent tasks related to your long-term goals (i.e. growing your side hustle)
  • Quadrant 3: Not important but urgent tasks that interrupt your time
  • Quadrant 4: Not important and not urgent tasks that simply waste your time (i.e. binge watching television or endlessly surfing the web)

Throughout the day, in each block of time you choose to track, place the corresponding number of the quadrant and circle it. At the end of the day, do an audit. How much time did you spend in each of the quadrants? How much did you waste in quadrant 4? How much did you devote to quadrant 2? You might be shocked by the results. If you’re serious about scaling your side hustle, then knowing where your time is going is crucial.

Related: 10 New Ideas for Making Money on the Side

2. Follow the 80-20 Rule.

The 80-20 Rule, or the Pareto Principle, states that 80 percent of our results comes from 20 percent of our efforts. When it comes to your side hustle, that means that only a fraction of your efforts are generating the biggest results. The key here is to identify those efforts if you intend to scale.

In fact, the best way to scale your side hustle idea is to follow this rule. By tracking your time, you can better manage this. But, you need to be meticulous about how you track all your efforts. Identifying this might be a challenge. But, once you do, the sky really is the limit.

Related: A Complete Guide to the Highest-Paying Jobs, Companies, Freelance Jobs and More

3. Spend one hour every day planning.

Take the first hour of every morning and spend it planning. Sit and think about your business. Notebook and pen in hand, do it the old-fashioned way. Ditch the laptop and phone for the hour. Turn off all the other distractions. And just write down what it is you plan to do to get you from your current situation toward your goals.

If you’re serious about achieving your goals, you need to plan. The devil is in the so-called details. That’s why you have to obsess over the planning phase. Make it a habit. Do it every single morning. It will help you to determine what’s working and what isn’t.

Related: 10 Side Hustles Ideal for Making Some Spare Cash In the Evenings

4. Model other successful businesses.

Tony Robbins often says that you should model what works. “Success leaves clues,” are words that he often speaks. However, it’s not just Robbins who believes in this. Russell Brunson, who’s one of the greatest marketers in modern history, believes wholeheartedly in modeling. He calls it funnel hacking. And he’s devoted an entire TV series to help instill this into his fans, followers and overall culture.

Brunson suggests going through a business and buying everything they have to offer. And record it while you do it. This way, you can see all the up-sells and down-sells and emails and headlines and copy throughout the process. Then, you can just model what’s working. If there are five paragraphs under a title, write five paragraphs. If there were two one-time offers, create two one-time offers. And so on.

You can scale any side hustle by doing this. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in. Head to Facebook and like all the pages and groups associated with that interest so that advertisers begin targeting you. Next, look for ads with hundreds of thousands or millions of views that are relevant to what you’re offering. Then, hack the sales funnel. Plus, you can use Ad Beat and Similar Web to see all their ads and where their traffic sources are coming from.

Related: Are You Ready for a Side Hustle? Here’s How to Know.

5. Use email marketing effectively.

It doesn’t matter what type of side hustle you’re engaged in, if you’re not building your list, you’re wasting your time. You can’t expect to scale your efforts of earning money online or as a digital nomad from anywhere in the world, if you’re not sending out emails.

Afraid to send out emails? That’s quite okay. You’ll get used to it. But, this single activity will net you more money than all the other activities combined in trying to scale your side hustle business. Plain and simple. So, get really good at email marketing. Create a lead magnet that adds value and tell your story.

Engage with your audience and they’ll engage with you. Remember, people don’t buy products from brands they don’t trust or know. They buy from other people. If you get people to fall in love with you or your journey, then they’ll buy whatever it is that you’re offering. And you can offer just about anything at any price point, and people will buy it.

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10 Mistakes Millionaires Never Make Twice




To make millions and live a successful life, you have to learn from your mistakes. Yes, it is cliche, but it is significantly more challenging and important than it sounds.

We make mistakes all of the time. Both recognizing and learning from them in the midst of everything else happening in life is difficult. What differentiates those gaining higher success is their ability to learn from these failures and not repeat them.

Here are 10 common mistakes, specifically, that millionaires seldom make twice that contribute to their successful lives:

1. Worrying about people who do not like them.

Upon achieving even a basic level of success, there will likely be others who are jealous of you or do not like you. Worrying about those people and trying to please everyone takes attention away from what really matters.

Successful people tend to have a time in their lives when they realize that worrying about the “haters” is not productive. From there on out, they are able to forget about them and focus on the people who do matter. Doing so increases their confidence and productivity.

You will have haters and people who dislike things you do at many points in your life. Learn from them and make changes if needed. Most of the time however, you’ll just want to ignore them. It’s not productive and will not lead to you becoming the person you need to be.

Related: 10 Things Confident People Don’t Do

2. Making emotionally driven important decisions.

It just takes one poor emotionally driven decision to mess things up big time. This could be with work, with a partner or in another area of life. When we are experiencing intense emotions, we tend to have a clouded judgment that can be very detrimental. Successful people have learned to take a step back and clear their minds before making key decisions.

Related: 5 Signs You’re Too Emotional to Decide What’s Best for Your Business

3. Not being honest with themselves.

When life gets you down, it is easy to rationalize your perception of the world or blame your problems on others. Most successful people realize they need to take accountability for their own actions. Blaming others does not accomplish anything, even when someone else might be partially to blame. When you start a business this can be particularly hard when you put so much on yourself. I’ve personally been through this countless times, you will have a million things going through your head. It becomes overwhelming.

Instead, taking the blame and being honest with oneself is a huge step toward success. Doing so will allow you to overcome your vices and be much more receptive to feedback and change. It will also help you to learn to delegate. As an entrepreneur, you’ll have to learn this important skill.

Related: 10 Behaviors of Genuine People

4. Lying.

Lying is almost never a good thing. That is especially true in high-stress situations. Despite the immediate gratification or the conflict that it might prevent, lying nearly always tends to be detrimental down the road. All it takes is one bad lie for millionaires to realize that they should stop being dishonest.

There are definitely successful people that do lie, but they have accumulated their success and wealth in the wrong ways. They are at higher risk of getting caught and losing what they have worked for. Plus, they are morally in the red and tend to have bad reputations that will manifest themselves at some point.

Related: Use This Secret Military Trick to Tell if Someone Is Lying

5. Not seeing sunk costs for what they are.

Any time, energy, or money that has already been put into something is sunk. The cost already occurred, and thinking about it when making future decisions is counterproductive. This is a concept that is taught in every basic economics class, yet, so many people still fail to realize these flaws in thinking.

Successful people may take one short moment to grieve a sunk cost in their lives. Then they let it go — learn to do this. When unsuccessful people focus on the sunk costs it hurts them greatly. This could be in regards to a financial decision, a company relationship, or a project/job.

Understanding that holding onto the hurt and pain and thought can take you out of the game. It’s a fallacy in to make a cost/benefit judgment based on future outcomes using a sunk cost as your measurement. It’s a great way to whip yourself but crucial to let go for effective decision making.

Related: Don’t Stick With a Failing Project or Person Just Because You’ve Already Invested Time and Money

6. Worrying about the little things.

Millionaires have a lot on their plate. Spending thought and energy on trivial parts of life can be a huge problem. The world is vast and we are just a small part of it. Being able to put life into the larger picture can be greatly beneficial in honing attention toward the things that matter most. I personally have found this is a big factor in making people happy.

Related: Why Worry? Because We Do. But We Can Kick the Habit.

7. Not finding ways to decompress and re-energize.

There are people who work their tails off and achieve success without taking time for themselves. These people almost always burn out eventually. The ones that are able to successfully recover find the outlets they need to live a more sustainable life. Whether that is more exercise, more time with loved ones, meditating, or anything else, they learn how to re-energize when needed.

Related: 10 Ways to Motivate Yourself When You’re Really Not Feeling It

8. Never changing their mind.

Sometimes being stubborn can be positive, but never all of the time. There are situations when our biases have swayed us in one particular direction and we are adamantly against change.

The most successful people have learned from these moments when they were wrong. Moving forward, they are able to push back on their own perceptions and ideas in order to achieve a higher level and quality of thinking.

Related: 10 Mistakes Intelligent People Never Make Twice

9. Not asking for help.

In order to become very successful, you’re going to need to work with others. Going through life as one of the smartest people makes it hard to ask anybody for help, though. That said, doing so is critical.

Successful people have realized that others are better than them at certain things. Plus, they know that they cannot do everything on their own. Those reflections are invaluable in getting more accomplished at a higher level each day.

Related: Get Your Ego Out of the Way and Ask for Help When You Need It

10. Always playing things safe.

People who always take the safe route do not tend to make millions. There might be times in one’s life where risk aversion makes sense. Although, you cannot excel if that is you 100 percent of the time.

Successful people have had experiences where they passed on opportunities that could have yielded them great rewards. The best have learned from these moments and become more willing to take chances moving forward.

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Go Bigger Than a Resolution




Let’s be real. It is time.

It is time for something different. It is time once and for all to forget silly resolutions that are overreaching quick fixes for some surface issue. It is time once and for all to stop focusing your energy, time and passions on what the masses do. Time to stop rushing towards a short-term solution or change.

It is time to rise above the chaos of now and instead, to do something meaningful. Instead, it is time to crush our gigantic, very incredible and astonishing dreams for your future.

Because you can. But you can only get to your final destination if you know where you want to go. We all get that. But do we live that? Are we working towards our future every day?

Thought leader Tony Robbins says, “Most overestimate what they can do in a year, but they underestimate what they can do in a lifetime.” The good news is, with focus, we can far surpass the goals we set for ourselves, no matter how outrageous they are.

More than New Year’s resolutions.

As you set your intentions for 2018, don’t just look at what you want to change or the resolutions you want to make. Set your overall destination for your future based on smaller goals to accomplish this year in order to make your very real big dream come true.

I go through a dream process every year. It has allowed me to be a better boss. A better mom. A better wife. It allowed me to become a best-selling author multiple times and to lose 50 pounds. I took my marketing firm from bankruptcy to a multi-million-dollar agency, while taking more time off from work to spend with my family.

Related: How Smart Entrepreneurs Find Time For Their Families

All just by focusing on the big dream goal? Yes, every day. But the process isn’t magic. It is focused on outcomes first and then the steps we need to take in order to make that outcome happen.

It is time: Start here.

Here’s the process: Go to a quiet place that you find inspiring to do this exercise. It may be your favorite comfy chair, a mountain hike or the water’s edge. Plan on at least 30 minutes of uninterrupted quiet to complete all steps.

Set the dream:

Picturing ten years from now, what do you want your life to look like?

  • Where are you living?
  • Who is living with you?
  • What does an ideal day look like?
  • What do you look like physically?
  • What is your family make up?
  • How much money are you bringing in each month to support your lifestyle?

Amplify Your Strengths:

  • Of all of the things you do right now as part of your job, what do you enjoy doing most?
  • What do others come to you for advice for?
  • What are you best at?

Uncover what matters:

What is your why? Why do you do what you do?

Bring it all together:

Focus on your why, on your financial goals, and on what you are most passionate about. Ask: What do you want to accomplish in your career ten years from now?

With that in hand, reverse engineer steps to get from that future back to today:

  • What do you need to have done five years from now to make your ten-year goal possible?
  • What do you need to have done one year from now to make your five-year goal possible?
  • What do you need to have done during the first quarter of 2018 to make this one-year goal possible?
  • What do you need to have done this January to make your quarterly goal possible?
  • What do you need to have done this week to accomplish your monthly goal?
  • What do you need to do today to make this week’s goal possible?

Seal the deal with yourself.

When you’ve completed those steps and created that map, deepen your journey’s meaning by walking yourself through this visualization process. I like to play music to create a more dimensional experience, but that’s totally up to you. If you take the music route, try “Devi Prayer,” found on Spotify or iTunes.

Related: 12 Ways That Music Makes You More Productive At Work

Close your eyes. It is ten years from now, and you’ve accomplished your ten-year dream. Picture yourself right in the center of your dream realized. Stand firm in this spot and feel where you are. What do you hear? What do you see? What do you smell? Don’t watch yourself therebe there. Look out through your own eyes. See what is around you as though you are there. Right now.

Imagine that you are slowly starting to turn around. Take a step and turn to the right. You can now see all that you love most. The people who mean the most to you are there smiling at you and sharing their love for you. They are filled to the brim with love, thankful for you and your love for them. You can feel their love for you coming strongly towards you.

You take another step and see all of the lives you have blessed these last ten years. These are the people you have served who have brought you to this moment. From the customers you helped, to the employees you employed, to the vendors you supported, to the charities you have given to — they are cheering for you, holding up signs with “Thank you!” and applauding. They are jumping up and down with gratitude and thanksgiving for all you have done for them. Feel your body fill with joy at their joy. Feel your fingers tingle with gratitude.

Turn once more and see your Creator showing you a speed reel of all that you accomplished the last ten years. Your Creator pulls you into a big, deep hug and tells you, “Well done.” You are filled with accomplishment, pride, love, and thanksgiving for the now. For all that your life has become.

You then turn back one more time and feel everything around you. From where you dream of being, to who you dream being there. You can feel all of the joy and love. From the end of your toes, to every fiber on your head. You are filled with gratitude, joy and love.

Related: 20 Wise Insights on Gratitude to Spark a Positive Mindset

Now, take it one more step.

And then — this is important, and a step you won’t want to do, but you have to: Picture everything being taken away.

Hear the cheers of gratitude change to yells of hate. Watch those who you love crying for all that wasn’t. See the place that you dreamed of, being pulled away from you like a rubber band. Picture darkness, emptiness and nothingness. Picture sadness. Feel that sadness searing your skin.

But then there is a pinprick of light in the darkness. A small glimmer of hope. You walk towards it. It is your Creator. Your Creator looks to you with sadness and asks, “Why?”

Why didn’t you, when you could have? Feel that disappointment. Feel the regret. Feel the failure. Let it flush your skin. Feel the weight up on your shoulders; so heavy it is hard to sit up straight. Sit there for a minute beneath that weight.

But then, imagine your Creator looking into your eyes and asking you sincerely and with love: “Do you want another chance? Do you want a chance to fulfill your vision? Another chance to serve those you were meant to serve and feel the love and gratitude of those lives you have touched?”

Do you take that second chance? Open your eyes and write down what you elect to do.

You get to decide. Choose!

You were made to thrive. You weren’t made to have your time wasted, your money wasted, or your future wasted. You were meant to flourish and prosper. Meant to love and be loved. You have a future dream that is yearning for you to get there. You get to decide what to do today. You know now that it will impact what happens tomorrow. You can choose what happens next.

What will you do today?

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