Avoiding Burnout

Avoiding Burnout

I’ve seen entrepreneurs learn the lesson of “burning out” the hard way - either by physical and/or mental collapse or emotional stress that comes from damaging their relationships by working too many hours. When burnout occurs productivity wanes, energy lessens, motivation disappears, and a sense of despair can occur. You are far more likely to make poor decisions, doubt your competence, develop a bad attitude or give up and quit when you experience burnout. I’ve put together a few suggestions to avoid burnout 1. Prioritize every morning If you are constantly thinking of everything that you have to do you will get overwhelmed before you even get out of bed. What do you need to accomplish this month? Break it down into 4 weeks, then break your week down into daily tasks. Each day choose your top 3 priorities and start your day by getting these priorities done first, then move onto other things on your list. 2.  Schedule in a break for 20 - 30 minutes per day This break is for you to have some quality alone time each day. Some ideas could be to read, pray, meditate, work on a hobby, take a walk etc. No texting,…

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6 Ways To Become Your Best Self

6 Ways to Become your Best Self

“We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.” -Jesse Owens The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) wanted Jesse Owens to boycott the 1936 Olympic Games in order to send a message to the world regarding Adolf Hitler's policies toward people of color. Others felt that Owens emerging victorious at the Games would send an even louder message. Of course, this would only be true if Owens dominated. Fortunately, Jesse Owens won four gold medals in the Games becoming the most successful athlete at the Games and crushing Hitler's views on Aryan supremacy. We may not have as much pressure on us as Jesse Owens did or be in a major competition with all the best competitors in the world in our business category, but we are in competition against ourselves on a daily basis. I believe that this is where we can truly be a “winner”. We should focus on being our best “inner” self, not on just achieving “outer” success. So how do we do it? How do we become our best self? Believe that you Can Above all…

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Book Of The Month – March

Book of the Month – March

For the month of March the book that I’ve chosen is The Art of Significance: Achieving the Level Beyond Success by Dan Clark. Dan is a good friend of mine and I have a tremendous amount of respect for him and his wisdom. He is a master motivator with high integrity which is why I’m recommending his book. Dan was so gracious to write the foreword to my book for which I’m grateful. I’m sure that many of you have heard him speak, so you are aware of his ability to inspire people to become their best self.   Book summary This book isn’t your average business leadership book, but a complete instruction manual for going beyond successful to becoming significant. Dan Clark, one of the world's leading inspirational speakers and leadership trainers, vehemently opposes the conventional wisdom about success. He believes it's tragic and superficial to build our careers and personal lives around getting more money, bigger houses, cooler toys, and fancier job titles. What's it all worth in the end? How many outwardly successful people still feel empty inside? Clark has spent decades traveling around the world, interviewing and consulting with presidents, generals, sheikhs and corporate leaders; creating his…

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3 Common Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make

3 Common Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make

Mistake 1 Beginning with unrealistic expectations You have huge goals - you’re going to change the world and while you’re at it become extremely wealthy within 6 months! I’m not saying to not dream big, but you can become overwhelmed before you even get started. Break your large goals into small steps and what you need to be doing on a daily and monthly basis. You probably aren’t going to have overnight success - starting and growing your own business takes hard work and persistence. Legendary coach John Wooden said, “It takes time to create excellence (success). If it could be done more quickly, more people would do it.” Mistake 2 Expecting everyone around you to be excited for you There will be those that are genuinely excited for you and encouraging in your circle. However, there will also be some who are doubtful and negative because they may have tried to build a business and failed. Other people may want you to fail because they are hoping to prove that the fears that are holding them back from trying a new venture or chasing a new dream are valid - they wouldn’t have succeeded anyway. When you do find…

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3 Ways To Change Your Mindset

3 Ways to Change your Mindset

What sets successful people apart from others who are frustrated in their attempts to improve? According to pioneering Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck’s work documented in her book Mindset, The New Psychology of Success, the best predictor of success in life is your mindset. Which mindset do you have? Here is a quick quiz to find out: You can learn new things, but you can’t really change how intelligent you are.  No matter how much intelligence you have, you can substantially change it. Those who achieve great success generally believe they can improve and grow. This is called a "growth mindset." Those who are frustrated in their attempts to succeed tend to believe their abilities and talents are static. They have a "fixed mindset."  The exciting part of Dr. Dweck’s research is that science proves that you can change your mindset.  The saying that someone is too old to change their stripes isn’t true. This very idea could be the catalyst for many people to find more success in their lives. The fixed mindset says, "Are you sure you can do it? Maybe you don't have the talent or skills." The growth mindset answers, "I'm not sure I can do it…

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‘Must Read’ Books For 2016

‘Must read’ books for 2016

Do you want to grow your business? Do you want to become a more disciplined achiever? Then I cannot stress enough how important it is that you set aside some time every day to read personal/professional development books. I’ve listed some of what I consider ‘must read’ books as a starting place for this discussion.  You may have already read some of these, but if it’s been awhile, then pick them up again. Create a study group or find a reading partner that you can have discussions with. There are too many books to include on this list, so I’ve narrowed it down to a few great classics: Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey As a Man Thinketh by James Allen The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino How Successful People Think by John Maxwell The Richest Man in Babylon by George Clason Secrets of Closing the Sale by Zig Ziglar I guarantee that you will be amazed at…

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Making Time For YOU

Making Time for YOU

“The best thinking has been done in solitude.  The worst has been done in turmoil.” -Thomas A. Edison We’ve all heard of the danger of burning the candle at both ends. Henry David Thoreau escaped to Walden Pond, MA to “live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life.” He removed himself from his busy life to be alone to contemplate and practice self-reliance in the quiet of the woods. He lived in the 19th century which didn’t have the noise, TV, internet and other consuming resources and activities we now live with. Most of us won’t go to such drastic measures to escape our demanding lives. However, it’s important to take time for yourself - to be alone with your thoughts and not be interrupted. We read and talk a lot about taking care of ourselves physically, which is also important, but we need to consider how to mentally take care of ourselves as well. In the morning, I think of things I’m grateful for and offer up a prayer to start my day.  I enjoy reading my scriptures. I also make a list of daily goals that I want to accomplish. Other ideas could be to read…

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The Power Of Giving

The Power of Giving

"For it is in giving that we receive." -St. Francis of Assisi   I love the Christmas story by O. Henry of the married couple Jim and Della Dillingham.  They are very poor and don’t have enough money to buy each other Christmas presents.  Jim sells his watch to buy hair combs for Della’s long, beautiful hair and Della sells her hair to buy Jim a chain for his beloved watch.  So when Christmas arrives their gifts to each other are no longer relevant.  This story illustrates that whatever the gifts - the most important thing is when they are given with love and consideration. Most of us were taught as children that it is better to give than to receive.  So why do people give?  Giving teaches us to look beyond ourselves. It teaches us to be of greater service to others through kind words, deeds or actual gifts. It also makes the world a better place.  We don’t do good because we feel good. We feel good because we do good.   Here are some additional gifts you may consider giving: Give an experience as a gift.  Experiences create memories. Consider giving anonymously to those in need.  This…

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What I Would Tell My Younger Self

What I Would Tell My Younger Self

When you reach my age, it's inevitable that you reflect back on your life.  I’ve considered the experiences that shaped my life, how my core beliefs and values have guided my life and most specifically how the hand of God has led me along.  This reflection was one of  the reasons why I published my memoirs earlier this year.   God has blessed my life in such a way that I’ve been given the opportunity to give back to His children. The other day someone asked me what I would tell my younger self if I could go back in time.  It’s an interesting thing to ponder about. Some of you may be young and just starting your career, but for those of you who have a few more years under your belt - what would you tell your younger self? Here are a few things I would advise my younger self about: The first thing I would tell myself is...   You’ve got to relax and enjoy the moment a bit more!   Regarding business 1) Don’t take people at face value.  Initially trust them, but then verify what they’re saying to you.  Unfortunately, there are some people who will…

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How To Find The Right Mentor

How to Find the Right Mentor

Over forty years in business have taught me that great mentors are everywhere. You don’t have to find the one golden Master Mentor to make all your dreams come true. However, you do need to know what you’re looking for and what kind of results you’d like to achieve. Here are a few ways to find the right mentor(s) for you and the best part is that you can get started right away: Read, Read, Read Some of my best mentors have been those that I’ve read about in books. They’ve provided role models for developing my character and work ethic along with motivation in instilling in me that if they could do it so could I. When looking for a business/personal mentor look for those that have values that you admire along with personal integrity to always be true to their values. Another thing I look for is someone who has overcome challenges and not given up - these challenges mold people into strong leaders. I admire Bible prophets, the Founding Fathers of America, Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, Gandhi and Napoleon Hill to name a few. Harry S. Truman said, “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are…

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Why Every Entrepreneur Needs A Mentor

Why Every Entrepreneur Needs a Mentor

Bill Gates had Warren Buffett, Tony Robbins had Jim Rohn and Luke Skywalker had Yoda.   I had Jack Ritchason, who I will forever be grateful to. When I met him, he was a distributor at Shaklee, one of a handful of direct selling companies in business at that time. It was 1972 and I had just co-founded Nature’s Sunshine Products.  I needed advice because we were blazing a relatively new trail.  He gave me a lot of counsel over the years, and without him I think I would have made some fatal mistakes.  There weren’t too many people you could ask for this kind of information. Jack was one who understood the business from A to Z and consistently pointed me in the right direction. Can I honestly say that I might not be where I’m at today without Jack?  Yes, this is a very honest conclusion. I’ve always been fascinated with data.  According to Bloomberg Business, 8 out of 10 entrepreneurs who start businesses fail within the first 18 months.  Research shows that 70 percent of mentored businesses survive more than five years, double the rate for non-mentored small businesses over that same period.  What does this mean?…

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Why Christmas Eve Will Make You Laugh And Cry

Why Christmas Eve Will Make You Laugh and Cry

“Movies can and do have tremendous influence in shaping young lives.” -Walt Disney   Here is an excerpt from Ken’s recently penned autobiography My Life Encapsulated when he talked about going to a movies as a kid. One of my Saturday morning excursions was to see the movie Superman.  I decided that if Superman could fly, I could put on a cape and fly off our third story balcony.  I got a towel and a safety pin, put my cape around my neck and stood out on that balcony fully determined to jump off and fly.  A little apprehensive, I was getting ready to leap just as my parents came home.  It was my mother who caught me and saved me.  That was one of the many times God has intervened and saved my life. Speaking of God’s intervention and movies, you got involved with the movie The Other Side of Heaven as a late investor so they could have the funds to finish the movie.  Please share with me the reasons you invested.   To summarize the movie, it’s about a young missionary who goes to Tonga in the 1950’s to preach the gospel.  There is one inspiring scene…

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When I Was A Superhero

When I was a Superhero

(Excerpt from my autobiography My Life Encapsulated) My childhood was really quite idyllic and full of the kind of play you don’t see as the norm these days with kids. We had no video games to occupy our time, no Internet, no cell phones, no social media. I played War with marbles or little plastic characters. I loved that game of War, and I played both sides, but one side was always “me” and, of course, it was the hero side. I’d play it on the wooden floor for hours at a time, learning strategies and just pretending. Life itself created patterns that enabled me to put my natural talents to good practice for strengthening the traits I would later need in business. What was a young boy who loved action movies to do? A certain amount of independence asserted itself into my life while I was still in elementary school. My father went back to school at the University of Utah to earn a PhD in metallurgy and organic chemistry, and my mother worked at the ZCMI credit department to support the family. I often visited her there at work after school, and her parents lived just a couple of…

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Recording Your Life

Recording Your Life

“Writing in a journal reminds you of your goals and of your learning in life.” -Robin Sharma I’ve recently been compiling my memoirs into an autobiography. Over the years, I’ve kept a couple of journals, but for the most part I’ve had to recall memories. In hindsight, I wish that I would have been better about keeping journals. For the book, I bought a small recorder and spent many evenings sharing my memories into it. I also had a professional interviewer jog my memory with questions. Thank goodness, I have a pretty, good memory. My wife Linda, our children and other people also helped me recall important events and details. Recently, I blogged about leaving a legacy. I love that my posterity will now be able to read my autobiography; they’ll be able to better appreciate my legacy. By leaving behind journals and photos, your posterity will be able to learn from your life lessons. Now with social media, you’re able to create an album with your posts and photos; this could help document your life for those that consistently post. Another way, if you’re not a writer, would be to audio or videotape as a way of documenting; then…

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THE FIVE C’s OF SUCCESS!

THE FIVE C’s OF SUCCESS!

If your dreams aren’t large enough to scare you, they are too small!   COMMITMENT Without a person making a commitment to himself or someone else, nothing great will be achieved.  Of course there are various types of commitments.  They vary from weak ones to large ones, unattached ones or strongly, emotional ones.  An unattached weak one might be a New Year’s resolution.  Few of these are ever strong enough to drive a person on - to make it so important that it is ever or rarely accomplished.  I believe a commitment must be attached to a strong belief to make it work.  The price must be worth the result.  To lose ten pounds isn’t worth the price of starving ourselves for the couple of months that would be required and then, maybe, we subconsciously think that we’d put it right back on again. How can we make such a commitment stronger?  I recommend that a commitment be made to another person who will encourage us on.  Now, it is getting stronger and has a greater likelihood  of happening.  What if our doctor tells us to lose the weight or we’ll be dead within 6 months?  Would we commit to…

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3 Attributes Of A Great Leader

3 Attributes of a Great Leader

As I think about what makes a great leader, these three come to the top in my mind. Love the People you Lead This is by far the most important one because it is the foundation of all attributes.  Love is felt by all you lead.  It creates a mutual relationship of loyalty and respect. If you truly love these people you will care about them and their family.  Get to know them, listen to them, acknowledge them when they do well.  Learn what motivates them and what their interests are.  If you have interests or a background similar to theirs, let them know.  Bonding takes time, but will never truly happen without something common between the two of you and that can lead to this love and caring. Listen to them, really listen.  Remember that God gave us two ears and only one mouth.  That should indicate to us to listen twice as much as we talk.  Some people are great at this while others have to learn this skill.   Machiavelli, an Italian philosopher, penned the book, “The Prince”.  In this book he asked whether or not it is better to be feared or loved as a leader.…

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UVU HONORS KEN BRAILSFORD WITH OUTSTANDING ALUMNI AWARD

UVU HONORS KEN BRAILSFORD WITH OUTSTANDING ALUMNI AWARD

Ken Brailsford to receive Utah Valley University (UVU) 2015 Outstanding Alumni Award.  The university recently announced the list of awards recipients and Ken is among seven individuals being honored by the UVU Alumni Association.  The award ceremony will be held on September 23, 2015 (which happens to be Ken's birthday) in Orem, Utah.  Below is the article that appeared in the university's official magazine: Zija Founder Ken Brailsford was recently awarded the Outstanding Alumni Award from Utah Valley University, where he was once a student. Now he watches with enthusiasm as buildings are added and enrollment numbers increase. Below is the article that was published in the university's official magazine: "Lead, follow, or get out of the way." This motto has guided Ken Brailsford throughout his extraordinary journey as a student, commissioned Army officer, and entrepreneur. “I don’t mind following, and I don’t mind leading,” says Brailsford, who is this year’s recipient of Utah Valley University’s Outstanding Alumni Award. “I can do either-I just want to be moving forward.” And moving forward is what Brailsford has done his entire life. After earning a degree in economics from Brigham Young University, getting married, and serving a stint in the Army during…

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Why Legacy Matters

Why Legacy Matters

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” - Winston Churchill A legacy is defined as something received from an ancestor.  Many people focus on building a legacy once they near retirement age.  I don’t ever plan on slowing down or retiring but I am at an age that many people retire by.  Now my focus is not only building but extending my legacy by passing it along.  One way that I’m doing this is writing my memoirs for not only my children and grandchildren but to publish as a book.  I’ve been talking about this in the past few weeks via this blog as the “Invisible Hand of God” leading me on this incredible journey.  I want to share my experiences that built my faith as well as other life lessons that I’ve learned. What legacy was left for me?  I’ve enjoyed researching my family tree to see where my roots lie.  It’s fascinating to see what countries my forefathers came from and when they came to America to settle and build their legacies here.  I believe that those who came before me helped shape me and that not only…

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Always On The Go

Always on the Go

“He who rests, rots.”  Arthur Fiedler In my home I have a treadmill desk where I can be active while working.  I’ve always been a man on the go. The evidence is piling up that too much sitting can take a serious toll on your health.  A 2014 study (http://annals.org/article.aspx?articleid=2091327) found sitting for prolonged periods raised the risk of cardiovascular disease by 14 percent, cancer by 13 percent, and diabetes by a whopping 91 percent.  The impact was even more pronounced in people who did not exercise regularly. Studies say the average person spends more than half their waking hours sedentary, doing such things as working at a computer, watching TV or sitting in traffic. Even if you exercise for 30 minutes a day, that 30 minutes does not counteract the sitting.  There are simple ways that people can counteract these negative effects. Below are some things you and I can do to be healthy: Move Just because you are in a corporate or home office doesn’t mean you can’t move. You need to stand up at least once an hour and move. Walk Park your car at the furthest edge of the parking lot and don’t take the elevator…

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My Journey (Part 5 And Beyond)

My Journey (Part 5 and beyond)

Over the past few weeks, I've shared some glimpses of the journey my life has taken.  While I'm continuing to write about my journey, I won't be sharing it on my blog.  The rest of my story, including many of the events, experiences and people that shaped my life will be in my upcoming book.  I'm excited to share this with you!  I'll continue to share blog posts regularly and even give some 'sneak peeks' of what will be in the book, so keep coming back.

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