Signs You’re Not Cut Out for the 9-to-5 Life

Many of us were raised to a subtle beat (or loud gong) that went something like, “Get good grades. Get into a decent school. Get a solid desk job. Be happy.”

Problem is, for some people this formula doesn’t lead to career fulfillment. In fact, for some, it’s a formula that ultimately makes them want to crawl out of their own skin or run screaming. Could this be you? What are some signs that you may, in fact, not be cut out for a traditional, 9-to-5 job?

Here are a few signs, plus what should you do if this speaks to you.

1. The Office Makes You Feel Like a Caged Animal 

It is not always about resenting authority. For some who aren’t cut out for traditional jobs, it’s the endless sea of desks that makes them want to run screaming.

What to do if you feel trapped?

If your job requires you to sit in one sp and stare at a computer all day (and you actually don’t mind the work), you may consider requesting the option to telecommute a couple times a week. If your role doesn’t really mandate sitting in one place every day, start planning your day (or requesting to do so) in a way that gets you out and about at least a time or two every day.

2. You Don’t Like Working Regimented Hours

Similar to the feeling that a cubicle may give you, being required to punch in and out each day can make some feel like they have no say in their career or life (and having no say make them want out).

What to Do If You Despise Set Hours

If this is your job (and it’s making you nuts), you may want to consider a new position or line of work. If the imposed hours are arbitrary, perhaps you could put together a proposal that shows your boss how you can achieve your goals outside of the current schedule.

3. You Resent Being Told What to Do (by Anyone)

If you feel a bubbling rage when asked to attend a meeting you don’t want to go to or work on a project you don’t think is a priority, this could be a warning sign. If you don’t think you shouldn’t have to arrive at a certain time or put in a request for vacation time at all? The writing’s on the wall.

What to Do If You’re Not Having it with Authority

If you’re feeling super resentful about having to answer to anyone, it may be a clear indicator that you’re meant to be your own boss. This isn’t us saying, “March right in and quit.” In many cases, this could be reckless. But if you truly despise working on someone else’s agenda, consider how you might earn a living as the one who gets to make the agenda.

If you’re simply not cut out for a 9-to-5, find strategic, creative, or brave ways to redefine your current role, or create your own.

Our award-winning coaches at the Ignite Your Potential Centers offer a complimentary 25-minute phone session to help. We are the #1 career coaches in San Francisco and Los Angeles, let us show you how we earned that praise.

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Icons Who Will Inspire You to Never Give Up

“Never give up.” It’s probably one of the most cliché phrases you’ll hear as you’re building your career. But there’s a reason this saying is common—you never know when success is around the corner. 

Believing that is easier said than done, so we collected the following stories of icons who definitely never gave up, including J.K. Rowling and Stephen King, for starters. These folks are now household names, but they didn’t become one easily. Read on and get inspired!

J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling had just gotten a divorce, was on government aid, and could barely afford to feed her baby in 1994, just three years before the first Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone, was published. When she was shopping it out, she was so poor she couldn’t afford a computer or even the cost of photocopying the 90,000-word novel, so she manually typed out each version to send to publishers. It was rejected dozens of times until finally Bloomsbury, a small London publisher, gave it a second chance after the CEO’s eight-year-old daughter fell in love with it.

Stephen King

King was broke and struggling while writing his first novel Carrie. He lived in a trailer with his wife—also a writer—and they both worked multiple jobs to support their family while pursuing their craft. They were so poor they had to borrow clothes for their wedding and had gotten rid of the telephone because it was too expensive.

King received so many rejection letters for his works that he developed a system for collecting them. In his book On Writing, he recalls: “By the time I was 14…the nail in my wall would no longer support the weight of the rejection slips impaled upon it. I replaced the nail with a railroad spike and kept on writing.” He received 60 rejections before selling his first short story, “The Glass Floor,” for $35. Even his now best-selling book, Carrie, wasn’t a hit at first. After dozens of rejections, he finally sold it for a meager advance to Doubleday Publishing, where the hardback sold only 13,000 copies—not great. Soon after, though, Signet Books signed on for the paperback rights for $400,000, $200,000 of which went to King. The beginning of his success achieved!

Tyler Perry

Perry had a rough childhood. He was physically and sexually abused growing up, got kicked out of high school, and tried to commit suicide twice—once as a preteen and again at 22. At 23 he moved to Atlanta and took up odd jobs as he started working on his stage career.

In 1992 he wrote, produced, and starred in his first theater production, I Know I’ve Been Changed, somewhat informed by his difficult upbringing. Perry put all his savings into the show and it failed miserably; the run lasted just one weekend and only 30 people came to watch. He kept up with the production, working more odd jobs and often slept in his car to get by. Six years later, Perry finally broke through when, on its seventh run, the show became a success. He’s since gone on to have an extremely successful career as a director, writer, and actor. In fact, Perry was named Forbes’ highest-paid man in entertainment in 2011.

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah’s dealt with a lot throughout her public life—criticism about her weight, racism, intrusive questions about her sexuality, just to name a few—but she never let it get in the way of her ambition and drive. When you look at her childhood, her personal triumphs are cast in an even more remarkable light.

Growing up, Oprah was reportedly a victim of sexual abuse and was repeatedly molested by her cousin, an uncle, and a family friend. Later, she became pregnant and gave birth to a child at age 14, who passed away just two weeks later. But Oprah persevered, going on to finish high school as an honors student, earning a full scholarship to college, and working her way up through the ranks of television, from a local network anchor in Nashville to an international superstar and creator of her OWN network (we couldn’t help ourselves.)

Jim Carrey

When Carrey was 14 years old, his father lost his job, and his family hit rough times. They moved into a VW van on a relative’s lawn, and the young aspiring comedian—who was so dedicated to his craft that he mailed his resume to The Carroll Burnett Show just a few years earlier, at age 10—took an eight-hours-per-day factory job after school to help make ends meet.

At age 15, Carrey performed his comedy routine onstage for the first time—in a suit his mom made him—and totally bombed, but he was undeterred. The next year, at 16, he quit school to focus on comedy full time. He moved to LA shortly after, where he would park on Mulholland Drive every night and visualize his success. One of these nights he wrote himself a check for $10,000,000 for “Acting Services Rendered,” which he dated for Thanksgiving 1995. Just before that date, he hit his payday with Dumb and Dumber. He put the deteriorated check, which he’d kept in his wallet the whole time, in his father’s casket.

“Never give up” still might be one of the most cliché phrases you’ll hear (even after reading these amazing success stories). But our award-winning coaches at the Ignite Your Potential Centers offer a complimentary 25-minute phone session to better explain why ‘never giving up’ is important when it comes to your career and life. We are the #1 career coaches in San Francisco and Los Angeles, let us show you how we earned that praise.

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The Best Productivity Books to Read

It is halfway through August 2019, that means it is time to finish the year strong and productive.

The Ignite Your Potential coaches looked at data on Goodreads to identify 6 of the best productivity books recommended by their community of 85 million readers. From research on the science of forming habits to tips from an expert who works with World Series champions, these highly-rated books are sure to be your guide to a more productive life at work and at home.

1. Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones by James Clear

James Clear demonstrates how the ability to create good habits—and break bad ones—can lead to a more productive personal and professional life. He backs up his scientific research with entertaining true stories from Olympic athletes, physicians, artists, and business leaders who have all mastered this skill. The key? Learning to think about your own identity in a new way.

2. Keep Going: 10 Ways to Stay Creative in Good Times and Bad by Austin Kleon

The bestselling author of Steal Like an Artist offers life-changing, illustrated advice and encouragement on how to stay creative, whether you’re facing personal burnout or bogged down by distractions. Fans of this short but inspiring book state that it’s “a reminder of what we need to do to remain creative despite the chaos of the world around us.”

3. Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World by Cal Newport

If you’re very easily distracted and interested in using your time more productively, this is the book for you. From the author of Deep Work comes a guide for anyone looking to escape the endless distractions of cell phones, computers, smart watches, and more. This Georgetown professor will introduce you to the “less is more” philosophy, using stories of modern digital minimalists to prove his point.

4. The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why it Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It by Kelly McGonigal

According to Stanford lecturer Kelly McGonigal, the key to unlocking powerful resolve is in our hands. She explains why just five minutes of exercise or one minute of slow breathing can give anyone a boost of willpower. Goodreads members say McGonigal has “a knack for communicating difficult science in lay terms with a sense of humor to boot.”

5. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg

For award-winning business reporter Charles Duhigg, the ability to form healthy habits drives every type of success, whether you want to manage a great team or build an influential product. In this book, he uses groundbreaking scientific research to explain why and how habits can unlock anyone’s potential.

6. The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande

The simple checklist is more powerful than we realize, according to award-winning multitasker Atul Gawande. The surgeon and Harvard professor shows us the true power of this common productivity tool, from helping set realistic goals in our daily lives to guiding global business decisions. The modern world is full of too many complexities, Gawande argues, but a checklist, when used correctly, can provide clarity and focus.

We hope these book recommendations will inspire you to finish 2019 on a positive, productive note. Our award-winning coaches at the Ignite Your Potential Centers offer a complimentary 25-minute phone session to help you find ways to increase your end of year productivity. We are the #1 career coaches in San Francisco and Los Angeles, let us show you how we earned that praise.

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Take a Risk: 10 Inspiring Quotes

Ignite Your Potential coaches want you to experience all life has to offer. You will never know where you can succeed if you stay within your comfort zone, so be brave and take a chance at the possibility of uncovering your life’s purpose. To find self-love and confidence, learn something new and discover unknown opportunities, consider some strategic risk-taking. Embracing positive risks will change your life in unexpected ways.

Need some inspiration? Read these fuel firing quotes:

  1. “Don’t be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
  2. “I believe that the most important single thing, beyond discipline and creativity, is daring to dare.” — Maya Angelou
  3. “…If there is no risk, there is no reward.” ― Christy Raedeke
  4. “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” ― Michael Jordan 
  5. “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” -Henry Ford
  6. “Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.” – Andre Gide
  7. “Never let the odds keep you from doing what you know in your heart you were meant to do.” — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
  8. “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far it is possible to go.” — T.S. Eliot
  9. “The biggest risk is not taking any risk…In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.” ― Mark Zuckerberg
  10. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” — Mark Twain

Whether it is investing in a property or applying for a job that you feel unqualified for, we hope this list of inspirational quotes inspired you to take some risks. Don’t want to take this adventurous journey alone? Ignite Your Potential Center coaches can be by your side every step of the way. We are #1 in San Francisco and Los Angeles, let us show you how we earned that praise. Remember, all of the award-winning coaches at the Ignite Your Potential Centers offer a complimentary 25-minute phone session to help you meet your life goals and career goals.
We challenge you to step out of your comfort zone today.

How do you create your wonderful life?

I often see people compromising before they even get started.

It’s terribly sad to me because it’s a self-imposed trap that comes about because we believe we can’t have what it is we really want.

Lean in: this is an illusion. The people you see who are successful…they keep their eye on what it is they desire. They tune into themselves. They ask this important question and they take the answer very seriously.

What do you desire? Keep asking yourself this question, like a mantra: What Do I Desire? What Do I Want For Myself If I Can Have Anything? And when you begin to hear the answer from the deepest part of yourself. Only then, are you ready to move forward. To create the life of your dreams.

Here’s Alan Watts guiding us through this process:

So I always ask the question: What would you like to do if money were no object? How would you really enjoy spending your life? Well it’s so amazing as the result of our kind of educational system, crowds of students say ‘Well, we’d like to be painters, we’d like to be poets, we’d like to be writers’ But as everybody knows you can’t earn any money that way! Another person says ‘Well I’d like to live an out-of-door’s life and ride horses.’ I said ‘You wanna teach in a riding school?’

Let’s go through with it. What do you want to do? When we finally got down to something which the individual says he really wants to do I will say to him ‘You do that! And forget the money!’ Because if you say that getting the money is the most important thing you will spend your life completely wasting your time! You’ll be doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living – that is to go on doing things you don’t like doing! Which is stupid! Better to have a short life that is full of which you like doing then a long life spent in a miserable way. And after all, if you do really like what you are doing – it doesn’t really matter what it is – you can eventually become a master of it. It’s the only way of becoming the master of something, to be really with it. And then you will be able to get a good fee for whatever it is. So don’t worry too much, somebody is interested in everything. Anything you can be interested in, you’ll find others who are.

But it’s absolutely stupid to spend your time doing things you don’t like in order to go on spending things you don’t like, doing things you don’t like and to teach our children to follow the same track. See, what we are doing is we are bringing up children and educating to live the same sort of lifes we are living. In order they may justify themselves and find satisfaction in life by bringing up their children to bring up their children to do the same thing. So it’s all retch and no vomit – it never gets there! And so therefore it’s so important to consider this question:

What do I desire?

Reflecting On Our Future: What Really Lies Ahead

We are living into an extraordinary decade ahead.

Are We On the Verge of Nuclear War with North Korea?
Famine In Somalia!
Protestors Pepper Sprayed By Police!
Syria: A Year of Horror!

News headlines such as these seem to shout out to us every day. But there is something important you need to know about your brain: the way it’s wired makes it natural for us to focus on the negative.

There’s an area of your brain called the amygdala, which plays a primary role in the processing of emotions and motivations…particularly those related to survival. And because of the way the amygdala functions, if we are presented with a dozen news stories, we will preferentially look at the adverse reports. Our mind pays attention to what is likely to be the biggest threat. Combine this with readily accessible sensational news and the result is a biased perspective; we tend to think the world around us is getting worse.

Peter Diamandis suggests that the sense that the world around us is degrading is in part a distortion caused by the amygdala. And while there are many great challenges and scary things happening in our human world…he uses this TED presentation to review some of our real human progress and to highlight the abundant possibilities.

Considering Dr. Peter Diamandis’s background, education, and track record, he is someone to listen to when reflecting on the future of our world. Recognized as a key figure in the development of the personal spaceflight industry, Dismandis is the Founder and Chairman of the X PRIZE Foundation, an educational non-profit prize institute whose mission is to create radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. He is the co-founder and chairman of Singularity University which educates technology world changers in areas such as: AI, Robotics, Nanotechnology, Biotechnology, Medicine, Neuroscience, Networks and Computing Systems, Energy and Environmental Systems, and has earned numerous awards and notable achievements.

So following Diamandis, let’s take a look at human progress over the last 100 years:

  • The average human lifespan has doubled
  • The average per capita income has tripled
  • Childhood mortality has come down a factor of 10
  • We are living during the most peaceful time ever in human history
  • Global literacy has gone from 25% to 80%

We have redefined what poverty is in the United States. Today people who live under the poverty line still have electricity, running water, toilets, refrigerators, and televisions. Thanks to the widespread availability of affordable Gexa Energy plans and other electricity provisions, powering a property is significantly more affordable compared to the past. 88% have mobile phones. 70% have a car and air conditioning.

A huge part of this increase in our human advantages has to do with technology and Moore’s Law, which explains that any tool that becomes an information technology, experiences price and performance doubling every 12 to 24 months. That’s why the cell phone in your pocket is literally a million times cheaper and a thousand times faster and smaller than the supercomputers of the 70s.

Let me break this down further than Diamandis does in this TED video. Gordon Moore, the co-founder and former chairman of Intel, observed in 1965, that the power of computing devices was doubling every two years. Computer chips were becoming smaller and smaller and cost was dropping as a result. He predicted that this would go on indefinitely…nearly 45 years later this theory still holds. It’s an exponential equation (doubling every two years) that applies to all technology and that is why our world is ever changing, ever improving.

10 years ago, a computer that had the same performance of the smartphone in your pocket, would have cost $20,000.

Diamandis explains that if we objectively observe the world we really live in…abundance is inevitable. This abundance he speaks of is not about creating a life of luxury for everyone, but rather, creating a life of possibility.

Energy crisis? Yes we are currently in one. But we are on a planet that is bathed in 5,000 times more energy than we use in a year. 16 terawatts (a unit of power equal to a million megawatts) of energy hit the surface of the planet every 88 minutes from the Sun. It’s not that energy is scarce, instead our problem is about accessibility. The cost of solar generated electricity is 50% less than that of diesel electricity. The cost of solar (based on what the technology is costing us now) dropped 50% last year. MIT just published a study that showed that by the end of this decade, solar power will cost only six cents an hour, this will cause many households and families to switch over to solar energy providers similar to Sandbar Solar & Electric as well as the many others within the industry.

Next, if we have abundant energy, we also have abundant water. Our planet is blue because we live on a water planet. 70% covered in water. Today humans fight over only a half a percent of this water…because 97% of the water is salt water. But we already have access to technology that can solve this problem…Dean Kamen has invented a solution that creates clean water from any source (polluted water, salt water, etc.) This machine, called Slingshot, is about the size of a washer machine and while it’s not currently low in cost… according to Moore’s Law… it soon will be.

Advances such as these are happening in all areas of our world: health care, education, communication, the list goes on.

The biggest force for bringing about a world of abundance is our human population. We just passed the 7 billion mark on earth and we know that the biggest protection against a population explosion is making the world healthy and educated. From the year 2000 to 2011 there was a growth in internet use of 528%. In other words, it went from 350 million users to 2 and a ¼ billion users. Consider what all these different and new minds can bring to table to help solve our world’s problems. We are becoming more connected and this is a good thing.

What encourages us to be confident about the future is that more than ever before, the individual, each and everyone of us, can take on problem solving the challenges we face within our world. The case for optimism is built on the fact that we have the tools of our exponential technology, we have the passion of the DIY inventors, we have the capital of the techno philanthropists, and we have billions of new minds coming online to work with us to solve the grand challenges. We are living into an extraordinary decade ahead.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BltRufe5kkI&rel=0&showinfo=0&theme=light&&w=760&h=428]

What Is Your Quest?

The questions we ask determine whether we will be superficial or profound, acceptors of the status quo or searchers. The difference between Einstein and Hitler depends on the questions they asked. What you ask is who you are. What you find depends on what you search for. Imagine the different type and quality of life you would have if the main question you asked when you got up each morning was each of the following: Where can I get my next fix of heroin? How do I serve God? What will the neighbors think? What happened during the big bang when the world was created? Who will love me? How do I get power? How can we destroy our enemy? How can we end violence? Where will I spend eternity? How can I make enough money? Who are my friends? How can I be comfortable? Is my cancer curable? How can I become famous? How do we heal the earth? Where can I get food for my children?

What is your quest? Your question?

This is written by Sam Keen an American author, professor and philosopher who is known for his exploration of questions regarding love, life, and spirituality.

 

Take a Moment…

You have to slow down to enjoy this video made by Rishi Kaneria starring stuntman Dante Ha. I love art that pulls your attention into the moment and the unseen world revealed by slow motion.

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What Is Important To You?

Candy Chang
A few weeks ago I posted how reflecting on our mortality can be a useful tool for coming into this-now-moment. Now is the only space that’s real…now is the one area we truly have to work with…now is where life is happening.

New Orleans’s artist Candy Chang is on to a similar theme with this thoughtful art piece. She creates art within cities that people can participate in. And from the looks of it…this participation changes the art itself and the people involved.

To support her project she has also created similar but individual, limited-edition paintings to help you remember what’s important to you.

What If This Were Your Last Day? Then Would You Live in the Moment?

I once had a roommate who was followed by death. She was a bit older then I was at the time, I in my mid-twenties, she in her mid-fifties. Susan was an interesting woman that went on dates almost every night of the week, travelled extensively, and had a beautiful condo in Chicago. She didn’t need a roommate, she just wanted company and someone to take care of her cat when she was out of town. She had fur coats, jewelry, and amazing stories…and I, paying very little for rent, got to share space with this living-out-loud woman in divine style. Susan really knew how to live and she explained to me…late at night while telling me her stories…that her rich life was directly correlated with all the loss she had experienced.

Susan’s chronicles were so poignant that I absorbed her life lessons without having to experience them myself. Bottom line…she had endured an incredible amount of death in her life and as a result she vowed to never do anything she didn’t want to be doing in her last moment on earth. For example, if we were about to do something fun…but she found out there was someone coming with she didn’t like, she might say, “I can’t accept dying with that person. I have to decline.” In other words, if that night, while driving we died in an accident, she didn’t want it to be with that particular person. She’d take a pass. This might seem like an eccentricity…and maybe it is…but she was so consistent, that it made a distinct impression on me. And even now, years since we’ve lost touch, I really don’t go a week without thinking about my life in terms of impermanence. Have you ever thought about this as you go through your day? Are you willing to experiment and report back your findings?

I’ve never found reflecting on death as morbid, although I’m sure some might. I simply consider the unpredictability of our future an easy tool for keeping in the present moment. It gives true perspective. And it helps with the letting go of small, petty, ego concerns. In reality, we don’t know what’s around the corner, there are no guarantees, and this-now-moment is the only the thing we really have.

We’ve all heard the stories of near death experiences and people who turn their lives around, suddenly realizing what’s most important to them. Then there are the books like Tuesdays With Maury or The Last Lecture where wisdom is given from those who are dying. Apparently death is a force that helps people let go of all the day-to-day petty crap that people tend to get caught up in. In the experience of dying (which we will all go through at some point) we are able to separate the wheat from the chaff; subtract what is worthwhile from what is useless. A fog clears and we are finally able to see. And what do people report? That money, possessions, and pursuits that feed our egos, are no longer fulfilling. That arguments and resentments no longer hold any temptation. Instead, connecting with others, family, being true to oneself, a sense of service, observing the simple beauty in life, spirituality, basically things that provide intrinsic value, hold the most reward. Well, why do we have to wait until we’re dying? Why do we continue to pretend that we have forever to get our priorities straight? Instead….since there’s no better time than the present…let’s awaken to life now.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life 
I was a bride married to amazement. 
I was a bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder 
if I have made of my life something particular and real.
 I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened 
or full of argument. I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world. –Mary Oliver