James who?

James Altucher, never heard of him? Me neither until I saw a tweet from Tim Ferris that links to a post about James Altucher and how he only owns 15 things.

He’s an author, entrepreneur and much more! He has founded 20 companies most of them failed (17 of them), but he still recovered even though it wasn’t easy. He’s a very interesting man, but I still didn’t know who he really was. I started by following him on Twitter, Facebook, Quora, I ordered his book, “Choose Yourself!” and until today I read his blog every day. He also has one of the best podcast on Itunes where he interviewed hundreds of successful people, “The James Altucher Show.” By reading his content, Now I know that he likes to play chess online and that he’s working out at Equinox. I also realized that James and I shared the same vision on many subjects and that’s why the more I read his content, the more I loved his work and the person itself. I’ll share with you the some of the most important ideas I got from him but there is much more! This post is only a sample of what he has to offer, that’s why I urge you to read his book and blog.

The daily practice

In his book, James explains how he recovered every time he got knocked down. He developed some habits, he refers to it as “the daily practice”.

He suggests that we have four bodies:

  • a physical body
  • an emotional body
  • a spiritual body
  • a mental body

You must take care of each body to choose yourself otherwise the body you’re not taking care of, dies.

The physical body

That’s your health, your shape, the core. You need to pay attention to what you eat, stop eating junk food and move every day. You don’t have to track your calories or run a marathon to be healthy. Start by creating some simple habits, walk 20 minutes a day, eat only homemade food. You also have to sleep enough. It is recommended to sleep between 7 and 9 hours but not everyone needs the same amount of sleep. Sometimes I sleep 6 hours, but I try not to get below that. Great results start with little changes in your routine.

The emotional body

You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.

― Jim Rohn

You don’t have to do something you don’t like; I always make sure that what I’m doing is what I want to do. Sometimes I accept to go out only to find myself in a position where I regret not to have declined the invitation. That’s something that drags me down. Be around like-minded people, people who are smarter than you; they will only have a positive influence on you. That’s a crucial point, don’t have negative people around you! They will take you down with them without you even realizing it!

The spiritual body

Live in the present, don’t waste your energy thinking on what you have no control. As James says people are “time traveling”, the past and future are only memories and speculation, and he’s right. People are so anxious about their future, or they have regrets. What matter is the present time, that’s where you are in control. If you focus too much on the past or the future, it will have a negative impact on the present. Trust yourself; the past cannot be changed, but if you do things right and you’re confident, great things will happen.

The mental body

Exercise your brain and become an “idea machine”! James suggests that we write down 10 ideas every day. Your brain is a muscle and the “idea muscle” atrophies like any other muscle without training. Whenever I go to a restaurant or any commerce, I try to find ideas to disrupt, improve or create an entirely different business. My mind is always working, I try to write down everything that comes to my mind, the ideas don’t have to be great but add as many details as you can, after one year you should have about 3600 of them.

Don’t place your future in someone else’s hands

I hate to depend on anyone. I don’t want to be nice to someone only because I rely on him; I want to be free and in control. This is why I don’t want to have a boss. I don’t even want my business to count on one big client. Nobody can threaten you if you’re independent. This is why you don’t want to rely on a salary; you have to create more than one income, diversify your sources! You can’t wait on anyone to give you what you want.Do more

Give without expecting something in return. This is something you can apply to everything. If you have a business whether you’re selling shoes or a service, give more than what expected. Show your clients that you care about them. As James says it in his book, “give extra features”, go the extra mile! It’ll get you a customer for life. You can also connect two people you have in your network, and you know that they can enhance each other’s business or life, even if you don’t have any benefits.

Don’t cheat. Honesty is the only way.

People at a certain point like to think that to succeed in life, you have to be dishonest. It’s just another excuse people use to justify their failure. The reality is that honesty is the only way to success. Of course, you know dishonest people who are doing well but for how long? They all end up getting caught or worse. On the other hand, honesty will build you an excellent reputation. Even if you don’t benefit from your honesty on the short term, on the long-term honesty compounds, people know about you and it creates you more opportunities.

It’s all up to you now to choose yourself and do what you always wanted to do.

Thanks to James for inspiring me this post.

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