The Secret Handbook 4 Teens

Spark Desire 4 Your Dreams in 3 Simple Steps


“The starting point of all achievement is desire.” – Napoleon Hill

The definition of desire is actually pretty simple:

Desire (noun) 1) a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen.

Given that definition, it’s going to seem pretty obviously when I tell you that desire is essential to achieving your dreams but let’s think about it a little bit. In fact, let’s think about it using a really common goal – eating healthier.

Everyone, at some point in their life, is likely going to set a goal of eating healthier.  The spark for wanting to do this may result from a trip to the doctor or it may be as simple as your jeans getting tighter. Either way, you resolve that from now on you’re going to start eating healthier.

Until someone asks you if you want a cupcake and who wants to give up a cupcake?

Well, you might actually say “No thanks.” to that cupcake if you really have a strong desire to eat healthier. If you really really want to make your goal happen. If, it turns out, you don’t really care all that much about the goal, it’s going to be much easier to give up on it.

The good news is that you can actually take some steps to make sure the desire is there. Here are my favorite three.

1) Share your dream with positive people who are going to support you. 

Having others cheering you on and telling you they believe in you makes a world of difference. Don’t be afraid to share your dream with others because you worry you’ll feel embarrassed if you don’t achieve it. The right people will support you no matter what happens and will increase the odds of getting to the finish line.

2) Know what you want and why you want it. 

Saying “I want to make a lot of money” might seem like a goal but it actually might not be. You might want to make a lot of money because you want security in your life. You might want to make a lot of money because you actually want to travel and see the world and that takes some serious cash. You might want to make money to help others. There’s usually a reason you want to achieve something (if there’s not, that’s another problem) so figure out what that is and focus on that.

3) Surround yourself with your goal.

Talk about your goal. Put up pictures of what it will look like. Write about it. Spend time every morning and every night thinking about it. Check in with others about it. If you set a goal and then file it away, it’s going to be easy to forget about it or ignore it. Constantly reminding yourself about your goal will keep re-fueling and igniting your desire.

What it boils down to is that desire is the necessary spark to igniting your dreams.

No spark, no fire.






Ask Yourself: What’s the Worst that Could Happen? Now Ask it Again!


First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it. Then proceed to improve on the worst. – Dale Carnegie

So often in life I think we get stuck because we’re afraid of the unknown. In fact, we’re specifically afraid of not just the unknown, we’re afraid of the worst unknown we can imagine.

How often have you not taken a chance or done something outside of your comfort zone because that little voice in your head immediately warns, “Whoa, whoa, whoa! Slow down! Have you thought about what could happen if you do that? Horrible thing X could happen and then you’d be totally screwed!”

But what if horrible thing X didn’t happen? What if the chance you took actually resulted in something really positive? And while we’re talking about this, why isn’t our first instinct to focus on all the good that could result? Why do we immediately jump to considering the worst outcome? We humans area sort of silly at times aren’t we?

The next time you find yourself not taking a chance do me a favor and ask yourself – what’s the worst that can happen?

Once you’ve figured out that worst thing (which often isn’t actually that horrible in reality), ask yourself again – what’s the worst that can happen?

In fact, go ahead and keep asking yourself this question. You may identify some actual show stoppers, and that’s good, but you may realize that the worst thing often has solutions that you could act on thus making it worth the risk and not that bad after all.

Try it today. I mean really, what’s the worst that could happen? 😉



5 Everyday Moments 2 Practice Awareness

brush your teeth

Practice Present Moment Awareness.

Be in the Now.

Practice Mindfulness.

I don’t know about you, but when I hear most of these phrases I picture a monk sitting in nature with no distractions entering a state of perfect bliss. Um, yeah, right.

That sounds lovely but it’s certainly not possible for most of us. In fact, most of us are barely just getting through the day nevermind finding time to sit in silence.

All is not lost though. Escaping into just a minute or two of awareness is still a good thing and easier to do than you might think.

Here are five everyday moments where you can practice awareness. You can certainly choose your own five but sometimes it helps to have someone point out the obvious and I am the master of pointing out the obvious.

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Advice Before a Test: I Know This, I Got This, I’m Ready

stress free zone

When I asked my 13 year-old step-daughter when she heard her inner voice the most she immediately replied:

Before a test.

That really resonated with me because I always felt stressed out before tests and my endless mind chatter probably didn’t do too much to help me. In fact, it probably hurt me just like it’s hurting you.

You’re going to hear me say this a lot on this blog and hopefully it will start to sink in the more I say it:

Your Mind Believes What You Tell It

So, if you let your little voice/ego be in charge of the conversation then your mind is going to believe you’re not prepared, you didn’t study enough, you’re not smart enough, the teacher doesn’t like you, blah blah blah.

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When You’re Really Mad or Sad, Practice Awareness

angry toddler

It’s easy to say “Practice Awareness” but it’s actually not that easy to do. Our minds our usually whirring along as fast a hummingbird’s heartbeat (which, if you didn’t know, is really really fast) so it’s pretty easy to ignore all the random thoughts and usually useless information going by.

One way to learn to practice awareness is when you’re really emotional about something. If you’re really angry or really sad take a moment to listen to what your little voice is saying. Chances are once you start to focus on it, it’s going to quiet down a little bit. It’s almost like it gets embarrassed that it’s been caught talking in class or something.

Only you will know what it’s saying in this moment of high emotion but I can almost guarantee that it’s only adding to the drama.

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Your First Peek Into the Secret Handbook

old book pages turning

So, are you ready for your first secret? I know I’m certainly ready to share it but before I do, I’d like to share a little bit about my strategy in presenting these secrets. There is actually a method to my madness (which, in and of itself, is rather frightening).

What I want you to understand is that there are lots of important things for you to know now but you can’t just dive right in. That would be like only reading the middle of a book (and hey, if that’s your thing that’s cool but you’re going to miss out on a lot.)  So,  I could just dive in a share a lot of inspirational quotes (to make you feel all warm and fuzzy) and  jump all over the place but honestly, that wouldn’t be fair to you.

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