My Top Experiences & Lessons Learned in 2016 (Written for Millenials)

2016 has been the best year of my life. I invested a lot of time into learning about myself and took the most action towards achieving what mattered most to me. This is the way I determine the success of … Continue reading

3 Reasons why you have no idea what to do with the rest of your life.

Recently I’ve come across many friends and even acquaintances of other friends who constantly express that they have no idea what they’d like to do with the rest of their lives. 

It’s not an uncommon thing at all. Most of us have shared this feeling at some point in our young lives and some of us still feel it today.

But have you ever thought why? Why don’t you know what you want to do? Why don’t you know what you like? Why aren’t you thinking about turning your hobbies into a career? 

Why isn’t it so simple for me?

Here are the reasons why.

1. You Surround Yourself With The Same People And Make No Effort To Branch Out.

Friends, you need them in life; they can help you out when the going gets tough and they can even help you feel good when you’re down. 

But each person in your life brings you something. In other words, you gain something from hanging out with them; whether it’s the pleasure of their presence or a tangible resource. Nobody has a friend that they hang out with for no reason, there is always an exchange of some sort.

When you don’t surround yourself with new people or you consistently stick with the same people for years and years you’re constantly exposed to the same things, have the same conversations, and do the same things. There’s no growth in that, meaning no long term benefit for you!

Ok great, but how can new people help me figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life? 

EASY. 

They introduce you to new things, people and experiences.

 How much more likely are you to do something when you have the support of a friend? I know some people who need a partner just to go to the gym! 

These new people will open your mind to trying new things that you may have never even thought of before. As creatures of habit, many humans are set in their ways and we think we know the things we like and don’t like. 

WRONG.

Sometimes we need another person to give us a push and then bam we find joy in something we would have never discovered otherwise.

2. You Never Leave Your Comfort Zone.

Like I just mentioned, we are creatures of habit. We enjoy doing the same thing every day, we like our daily routine, it’s perfectly normal to feel that way, no one is wrong for that.

But again, there’s no growth in that.

When was the last time you deviated from your daily routine? When was the last time you went to a new city? When’s the last time you did something for the first time?

If it’s been a long time for you, then you should start thinking about making changes.

If you’ve been working the same job for years and have no opportunity for growth then leave it.

If you’ve been living in the same city for several years and have no plan on how to advance forward in your life, then leave it.

If you’ve been with a significant other that you see no future with who does not add to your personal development and success, then leave them.

If you only think about today, well you better start thinking about tomorrow.

Being comfortable is a trap, you should always be looking for ways to grow and step out of that comfort zone. 

When you do this, you get exposed to new things and will certainly have new experiences. This “newness” will create opportunities for you to see things you’re not used to and be exposed to what could be the passion you never knew you had.

3. It’s not important to you.

Depending on your age and where you are in life, the remainder of your life and what you choose to do with it should be a very important topic.

If you don’t know what you want to do, that’s okay. What’s not okay is settling for that answer. 

If you constantly find yourself saying I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know and you’re not doing anything to figure out the answer to that question then it’s clearly not important to you.

As I said before, degrees of importance will vary depending upon where you are in life and where you plan on going. It’s okay if this topic isn’t important to you today, it eventually will be and when that time comes you will consider answering that question.

But if you lack the curiosity and genuine interest of figuring out what it is you’re passionate about, no advice in this blog or anywhere will help you figure out what it is you want to do. You need to find the motivation and seek out your passion because it is not something that happens overnight.

Make a conscious effort to figure it out. Like I said it’s not easy, but don’t expect it to fall in your lap either. Get out there do something different and see what comes your way. 
Good luck.

As always, thank you for reading and feel free to leave any feedback.

The true meaning of “I don’t have time” & how to make time.

In our society and particularly in America, it has become the norm to never have time. You might also find it common to hear friends and colleagues complain about their lack of time, often wishing for more time in the day to complete all of their tasks.

The point is, we’re all complaining about time. But what are we really saying?

Here’s what we really mean when we say we have no time.

The things you claim to “never have time for” are actually things that are not important to you.

It’s not that we don’t have time to organize that photo album, call that old friend from high school, or clean the ceiling fan; but those things are less important and lack relevance to our immediate lives.

Let’s say your car breaks down. I strongly believe you’ll find time to fix it. Not because you actually have the time, but because it’s extremely important and relevant to how you get other things done. It’s a priority and there will be bigger consequences if you don’t solve the problem immediately, so you do it.

Why don’t you have time to go to the gym? Because it’s clearly not important to you, that’s why.

Time is an intangible object that we consistently use to rationalize things we never want or care to do.

“I don’t have the time for this”
“I can’t find the time to do it”
“I’m already too short on time”
“I’ll never be able to fit that into my schedule”

Translation: it’s not that important to me and I have other things that I need to do.

That’s it. Plain and simple.

Now how can we make time?

1. Don’t hold yourself back.

Sometimes there are things we truly value, things we really want to see ourselves doing or making time for in the day; but we still don’t do them.

Writing this blog is a perfect example. Since beginning my new job I have not been writing as consistently as I was prior to. I blamed my lack of time in addition to a lack of motivation.

I was lying to myself.

There were tons of things I wished to write about. But I held myself back by making excuses.

I started this blog with a spare 15 minutes from today’s lunch break. You’d be surprised at how many small spare time pockets you have in your day that if utilized, could yield higher task completion and productivity.

2. Prioritize and DONT get distracted.

If you want to get something done, tell yourself. Set reminders on your phone, put it in your calendar, and even write it on your hand if you have to. Do whatever it takes to keep it fresh on your mind and high on your priority list.

Reminding yourself of the importance a task bears will be helpful in creating a focus on that task. If we have one thing on our minds all day, one thing that we can’t wait to do, we will most likely do it as soon as possible. You have to get excited about the task and have an actual desire to get it completed or else you will get distracted.

How many of us just randomly begin scrolling through our news feeds when we actually should be getting work done?

I know it happens to me all the time and probably to you too.

I’m not going to suggest turning off your phone because no one would do that. But if you truly remind yourself of the importance level and create excitement around completing that task, your distractions will not pose a threat because the satisfaction received will outweigh the temporary pleasure delivered to us by scrolling through our social media outlets.

3. Find out where those spare pockets of time exist.

Some of the most common overlooked areas where we waste valuable time are:

1. Lunch breaks
2. Weekends
3. During travel
4. Early mornings
5. Late at night

Lunch breaks are usually dedicated to socializing, but if you look at top performers in any organization they don’t take a full hour or even half hour to eat and then chat with buddies. They eat and then get back to work or use the rest of that time to work on personal tasks.

Weekends. Finally, you don’t have to work and you get some time to relax. Even if you do work on the weekends, you just want to relax when you get home don’t you? Well that’s exactly why you won’t get anything done. Weekends are full of extra time that you can use to get ahead, don’t spend them sleeping away or lounging on the couch, and if you do then you clearly value that relaxation time over completing these tasks that you claim to never have time for.

During travel. Most of the time when you travel, it’s on a road trip or vacation. Well you you are not driving and most certainly if you are flying; bring some work with you. If you’re going to be sitting down for more than 2 hours you might as well make it productive right?

Early mornings. Do. Not. Hit. The. Snooze. Button. It’s a trap. Wake up, go through your morning routine and begin your day. Lounging around or lying in bed contributes nothing to your productivity levels and is a huge hindrance on your ability to execute.

Late at night. There is a clear tradeoff between productivity and sleep. But if you make use of the spare time pockets hidden throughout your day, you shouldn’t have to sacrifice sleep. I go to bed before 10pm every night and still get everything I want done. However, there might be sometimes where you have no choice and need to stay up, in that case you will have to decide what’s most important.

6 Reasons Why You Didnt Secure A Job After College

A lot of people blame the economy or say that the jobs they want aren’t out there. Some people blame their situations or environment. Some even say that no one is willing to give them the experience in order to get the job they want. I don’t believe any of that. It is all, 100% on you. THIS IS WHY YOU DIDNT GET A JOB.

  1. Your lifestyle never changed from freshman to senior year.

As a college senior graduating in less than a week I will be the first one to say that the majority of your sophomore & freshman year WILL be spent socializing and attending parties followed by waking up in strange places wondering what the hell you did last night.

That’s okay. It’s going to happen. But your focus and your lifestyle should change with each year in school. For me at least, it looked something like this.

  • Freshman year-
    • Meeting people, hooking up with girls, partying, maybe I’ll study.
  • Sophomore year-
    •  Meet different people, more girls, more parties, go out to new places, actually study because I did terrible last year.
  • Junior year-
    •  Begin thinking about a job, apply to internships, stay in more, less party, less girls, more school.
  • Senior year-
    •  Secure or working to secure a job for after graduation, party way less, drink wine at home with a small group of friends, focused on graduating.

If you are still a senior glorifying beer pong or having a consistent presence at house parties, realize that time of your life is over with. If your lifestyle is the same in your senior year as it was freshman year, then you are not spending your time wisely and more importantly not growing or maturing.

  1. You didn’t use your school’s resources.
  • Job fairs.
  • Internship fairs.
  • Center for Career development services.
  • Networking events.
  • Professors.

If you never used any of the above resources, you are at a huge disadvantage.

Career development services literally supplies the student body with internships, even paid ones! So why not hop in that persons office to discuss opportunities, you have all to gain and nothing to lose.

Professors also know a ton of professionals in various industries who are looking for fresh new grads with talent, but if you fail to meet with them and ask…well then u missed out.

Job fairs and networking events are huge! They literally allow you to meet employers on a face to face level and give you the opportunity to market yourself and tell them why they should choose you. Skipping out on these is a giant missed opportunity.

  1. You didn’t surround yourself with the right people.

If you are future minded, ambitious and consistently working to achieve your goals that is excellent and I commend you for it. But if everyone you hang out with is not, then you need to start looking for a new group of friends more like you.

Surround yourself with people who recognize your talents and celebrate your success. Not with people who are content with where they are or celebrate being good enough or achieving the bare minimum. You owe it to yourself to be surrounded by the best and if you believe that you are, you should seek into surround yourself with it at all times.

  1. You were unemployed during college.

Put yourself in the shoes of an employer. Would you want to hire a stand out student who never worked while in college? Some of you might say “sure why not, they have a great GPA and tons of service hours.” I can see that point of view. But I know that experience is 100 times more valuable than anything written on paper. 

Apply it to any other situation. Would you let a lawyer represent you in court if he had zero experience but finished at the top of his class? Or would you pick the lawyer who’s done 100+ cases? I’ll leave you all to answer that one.

And by the way, if you WERE NOT a stand out student AND you were unemployed….then you will face even tougher obstacles.

The next concern might be, “well how will working a meaningless part time job that doesn’t apply to my major be of any help?” Don’t sell yourself short! That “meaningless” part time job means a lot more than you think! Here is why working while in school makes you a better job candidate.

  • Displays ability to manage time.
  • Demonstrates commitment and prioritization.
  • Shows work ethic

All of these traits are considered when employers evaluate candidates for positions and if you were unemployed for 4 years, it doesn’t make you as attractive.

Another point that I must add is that, your part time jobs can hand you golden opportunities where you can do the following:

  • Network and meet potential employers
  • Get promoted and gain valuable experience
  • Get letters of recommendation
  1. You didn’t take accountability.

If you are one to still blame your professors or group members for the grades you received, grow up and take accountability.

Making excuses might have been okay during freshman and sophomore year but if you are STILL blaming other people for your current situation, then chances are you haven’t matured into adulthood.

You must realize that we are all equipped with the same resources and an identical 24 hours in each day to make use of them and achieve our goals. You are the reason for where you are in life and only you can change it.

Know that.

  1. You have a sense of entitlement.

Everyone who has a job or is in the position that you wish to be in started just like you did. FROM THE BOTTOM. No college graduate is going directly to the top of whatever field they find passion in.

Every industry has a set of stairs and they need to be climbed. I’m sure you are all familiar with the quote “the elevator to success is out of order; you’ll have to take the stairs.” It’s true, and you do have to take the stairs just like everyone before you did.

Also, just because you have a degree you think you DESERVE something? WHY? So many people have identical or superior credentials compared to you but for some reason you deserve more? You need to differentiate yourself and determine why you deserve things if you feel that you do so badly.

But it’s never too late. Even if you have already graduated. Reach back out to your school, work part time and build up contacts, stop partying and take accountability for your situation and you too can reach your goals.

Why Failure is NECESSARY for Success

You Will Fail Before You Succeed Failure is the pre requisite for success. It would be a difficult task to name a few people whose first attempt at anything was a wide glorious success.

  • Michael Jordan didn’t start off being able to slam dunk a basketball let alone make his high school varsity team.
  • I’m sure tiger wood’s first shot was not a hole in one.

For anyone into video games, when u start at level one, how long do you last before your character gets destroyed by a rival? Usually not too long, then you get better as you learn the game.

Why?

Why do we often fail? BECAUSE WE ARE SUPPOSED TO.

It’s normal. I wouldn’t expect anyone who drives a car for the first time, to possess the skill of a Nascar driver. That principle applies to any task/profession you can think of.

How We Currently Perceive Failure.

Failure has a negative connotation but it is actually the best thing we can experience, especially while you are young. When you think about failure, you probably think about storm clouds, defeat, and a feeling of inadequacy. Those emotions are okay to experience because they are temporary! However, in order to accept failure, we need to change the way it is perceived.

Failure doesn’t mean you lose, that you can never be great at anything. What it means is that you have eliminated a possibility. You are now one step closer to finding the answer. There are many ways to skin a cat and by failing, we eliminate one of those possibilities. So failure is actually an exciting thing because guess what? WERE CLOSER TO THE CORRECT ANSWER.

If there was a map with a circle that represented your starting point and an “x” identifying the destination. All of the space in between represents failure. Failure is what you must do In order to learn the correct way. In order to reach a finish line.

So without this “failure” we never learn. You can read about someone’s success and you might hear a great story but what will you learn? Now if you read an individual’s tale about failure, I can guarantee there will be a lesson to be absorbed.

Reacting To Failure

But There is more to failure than the act itself. More important than failure is HOW WE REACT TO IT. After you fall, (because you will at some point) will you stay down? Will you blame your environment or your circumstances for your position or will you own your failure, absorb all that it has to teach you and get back up to try again?

Too often people let their failures create a fear of failing again and again. It is often this fear that holds us back. Instead of fearing the same mistakes, recognize where they were made and how they helped you (or can help you) achieve what it is your seeking out to do, the correct way.

Don’t let failure hold you back, use failure to pave your way to success because each time you fail, by the process of elimination, you narrow down the possibilities of selecting a correct answer and get that much closer to success.

The importance of asking your self “Whats Next.”

Asking yourself “What’s next?”

As humans, we are creatures of habit. But we must understand that habits are highly poisonous. Did he just say poisonous?” Hold on, relax. I know what you’re probably thinking, “what about my morning routine?” “Or going to church with my family on Sunday’s? Are those habits poisonous too?” Let me explain before you exit this window. When I say, “Habits are poisonous” what I mean is that habits make us comfortable.

I am not saying that you should stop brushing your teeth every morning or quit the job you have been working at for 2 years now. That would be silly. What I want people to do is to ask themselves one question. “What’s next?” This habit will allow you to make changes in your routine life and achieve the goals you have, faster. In order to do this, it’s best to set up short and long term goals. Once you reach them you ask, “What’s next?” You can see how this forces you to make a choice on what to do, your next move has to differ from what you did to get there because your past moves have already been made and you can’t repeat them.

The same principle can be applied to working out. If a person is doing the same series of exercises month after month, there is no new challenge and with no new challenge comes no new results.

Never settle for “Just good enough.”

These habits that we form are the same as settling at just being “Good enough” and most of the time we even get praise for it. We have a job to be our worst critics because we are the only ones who know what we are capable of and only we know when we can do more.

As a student I have always done well in school, networked my way into jobs/internships and even secured a full time offer before graduation. I did this by always asking myself “What’s next”. I can’t tell you the amount of praise I get for my “Successful endeavors” from family and friends but I simply look at those accomplishments as things I “was supposed to do”. Isn’t that the point of college essentially, to secure a job afterwards?  I hadn’t done anything extraordinary and I knew that I could do more!

We have another responsibility of not letting the comments of others inflate our egos in such a way that we get comfortable and feel as though we have accomplished enough to cease the challenging of ourselves. Knowing that there is always room for improvement and new ways to challenge yourself is the key at never settling, this is why asking the question of “What’s next” is so vital.

The stepping stone concept

I have a picture that I like to paint for people when I illustrate this concept verbally and this it’s called “The stepping stone concept”. Hopefully this will make it clear for anyone who is in question on how to follow this methodology.

Picture a series of stepping stones; these stones are close enough to where you can walk from one to the other without much difficulty. The stones start off being rather large in size but as you progress and each task gets more difficult, the stones become smaller and smaller, requiring more strategy and planning for how exactly you will make your next move. You carefully travel from one stone to the next but you can never go backwards because as you leap from one to the other, the previous stone disappears. Now this leaves you with one option, to move forward and keep going on to the next goal or challenge. This way you keep growing, you get exposed to new things and people, you evolve as a person and this, my friends is how you accentuate your life. It is when people stay on a stone that they have found comfort on or when they feel as though they have crossed many stones and have no need to continue jumping that they feel this comfort; consequently becoming stagnant in every aspect of your life.

Not only will this accentuate your life by consistently sharpening your mind and body, but you will be able to help others get past the same stones that you once had to leap on. So in turn while you accentuate your life, you return the favor to another; and trust me when you’re able to give advice as a person who has been in their shoes you will notice that they will place more value on your words. So imagine if we all asked ourselves “What’s Next” and never settled, we would constantly go forward, always help others move forward and progress together. We need leaders in this world and if you can get through all of the stones that’s great, but you minimize your impact if you can’t teach another individual how to get to the same place as you.

-Danilo Vuk Capric.

5 Ways to make people like you instantly.

  1. Talk about THEM, not what you want.

When you meet someone for the first time, be inquisitive. Ask them about what they like, their interests, hobbies and goals in order to show that you are genuinely interested in them and what they have to say. Everyone loves to talk about themselves so the more listening you can do, the better. When you see an attractive person and wish to contact them in the future, do you just walk up and ask for precisely what you want? No, you need to talk about them. When people show a genuine interest in us, we relax, we are no longer under the impression that this person wants/needs something from us and consequently are more willing to offer something if indeed there is something we can help them with; but only after they express a true interest in us first. This is effective because we all lookout for ourselves before considering anyone else, so when a stranger approaches and considers everything about the other person and nothing about themselves, the result is a sense of importance created within the other party. Once that is established you will be able to acquire what it is you were initially looking for.

  1. Praise and recognize the work THEY do.

Do you know of anyone who doesn’t enjoy being congratulated or told they did a good job at something? If so please contact me immediately because I would love to meet that person.

Acknowledging people and their efforts, letting them know that they don’t go unappreciated, is one of the best ways to make people like you. Isn’t that why we have award ceremonies?

If one of your friends is trying to lose weight and constantly hits the gym, changes their entire diet and life style to complete a goal. Praise them for it! Acknowledge that you see the sacrifices they made and you realize how much will and determination that it took in order to make those changes. Not only will you help that person continue to pursue that goal but you positively reinforce their behaviors as well. You also become a great friend.

  1. Smile

The following benefits of smiling have been scientifically proven:

  • Increased speed in stress recovery
  • Release of endorphins
  • Causes others to smile (contagious)
  • Considered more attractive

With the following facts presented, failing to smile is a huge disadvantage that could be the difference between a great first impression and a not so great first impression. Another question you might want to ask yourself is, don’t I enjoy myself more when I’m surrounded people who smile? People who laugh? People who radiate positive energy? A common prerequisite to all these things is the act of smiling.

  1. Deliver on your promises

People don’t like being let down. Ever. If you say something, be sure to commit to it.

If you purchase something online with an expected delivery date and it does not arrive by the promised date, how does that make you feel? Most people would agree on a feeling of frustration or being let down, disappointed…etc. When you don’t keep your promises people may take it personal or feel as though you don’t find them to be of much importance. Once trust is lost, it is extremely difficult to get back.

  1. Remember their name

Nothing can be more insulting than forgetting a person’s name. No matter how inspiring your connection with them may be and how much common ground you can uncover, by the end of the conversation, if you have to ask “what was your name again?” It almost destroys all of the rapport that you just spent precious time building up. Compare it to building a log cabin for 5 years and just before you put the roof on it…a land slide demolishes the entire structure.