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Why Meditation is For Hustlers Too

Three simple ways meditation will make you a better entrepreneur.

Russell Simmons

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Russell

Meditation is going to make you happier, more connected to the world, and help you achieve your goals.

I’ve been starting companies, rehabilitating brands and promoting artists for over 30 years and I can promise you that no tool has made me a smarter, more focused and clearer thinking entrepreneur than meditation.

That’s the message I share with Hollywood hustlers and it’s the message I want to share with you now: Meditation is the greatest tool to help you harness and maximise your entrepreneurial spirit.

Three ways it will do it:

1. It makes you more focused

Meditation allows you to accomplish twice as much in half the time. If you take anything away from here, let it be that. By helping you let go of distractions that cloud your mind, meditation sharpens your focus to levels you didn’t think possible. I know this from experience and research backs it up too.

Related: 12 Indispensable Mindful Living Tools

People have this misconception that meditation will chill you out and make you soft. The opposite is true. I meditate every morning when I wake up and the second my session is over I’m eager to tackle whatever is on my plate for the day. Forget about a cup of coffee or even gym, meditation is all you need to get your mind sharpened and ready to go!

Imagine I’d developed a new technology to double your productivity in half the time. Every entrepreneur in the world would want that. Well, that ‘new technology’ is actually a tool that smart people have been using for thousands of years.

2. It gets you past ‘success’ and ‘failure’

Let’s be real: Most of us entrepreneurs get caught up in what we perceive to be the highs and lows of our professional lives. We pop champagne, buy fancy toys and celebrate when it seems like one of our ideas has ‘won,’ but we become dark and depressed when it seems like an idea has ‘lost’ or ‘failed.’

The truth is that neither reaction is sustainable. Being an entrepreneur is a journey that will have inevitable highs and lows, but will never actually end. So if you get too ‘high’ the first time something seems to go right for you, or get too low the first time something doesn’t work, you’re going to flame out quickly.

I’ve had plenty of companies the world was quick to label ‘successful’ that never actually did much, and companies that took years to turn a profit, but are now some of my strongest.

One of my favourite quotes from the Bhagavad-Gita (the main religious scripture of Hinduism), is ‘You have control over your work alone, never the fruit.’

To me, that means stop worrying about how much success you have and just stay focused on your work. Because when you embrace the process of your work, you’ll be much happier and do a much better job.

3. It lets you be more creative

Russell-Simmons

Every entrepreneur wants to be more creative, right? Meditation is a guaranteed way to connect with your creative spirit.

When you sit quietly and let your mind settle, all the innovative, inventive and inspired ideas hiding out in the depths of your mind are going to begin to bubble to the surface.

One group of people that I always noticed almost instinctively understood the connection between stillness and creativity were the great rappers I worked with. From Jay Z to Chuck D to the late Biggie Smalls, no matter how crazy things were getting in the studio around them, they were able to shut out the distractions around them and tap into their inner stillness. Which is why they always managed to create such innovative and timeless music.

Related: The Busy Person’s Guide to Reducing Stress

If, like most of us, you haven’t been blessed with the same gift for connecting with that creativity, you can use meditation to get there. I promise that if you meditate twice a day for 20 minutes for just six weeks, you will see incredible returns on that investment. You will find yourself becoming much more focused, balanced and creative.

And if you then decide to make meditation a permanent part of your life, as I suspect you will, you will start to benefit from all of its tremendous health benefits, which include lowered stress, reduced blood pressure and improved diet, areas many of us need help with.

That is to say nothing of what I consider to be meditation’s greatest gift: Having an increased sense of connection with and compassion for the rest of the world!

So are you sold yet?

If the answer is not quite, then I suspect your hesitation has something to do with not having enough time to meditate. When I hear that, I always come back with that old saying about meditation: ‘If you don’t have 20 minutes to delve into yourself through meditation, then that means you really need two hours.’

No matter what you do, or no matter how busy you perceive yourself to be, carve out 40 minutes a day for meditation. I promise you it will not only make you a better entrepreneur, but a better and healthier person as well.

Related: Be a Mental Machine

Russell Wendell Simmons is an American business magnate. He co-founded the hip hop music label Def Jam and created the clothing fashion lines Phat Farm, Argyleculture, and American Classics.

Self Development

5 Inspiring Quotes From Madiba To Stir You Into Action On Mandela Day

In honour of Mandela Day, here are 5 of Nelson Mandela’s most inspiring quotes.

Casandra Visser

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Bouncing Back

nelson-mandela

“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”

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Self Development

25 Bad Words That Make Other People Feel Inferior

If the harshest thing you have to say about someone is partly true, say the other part.

John Rampton

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word-choice

Did you know that in every language, there are more negative words than positive ones? It seems we need lots of words to describe our negative feelings, but we’re content with a handful of positive ones.

For instance, researchers have found that most cultures have words for seven basic emotions: Joy, fear, anger, sadness, disgust, shame and guilt.

That’s one positive emotion, and six negative

It’s no wonder so many of us have a hard time keeping our negative comments in check. Over the past six months I’ve been working on the verbal language that I’ve been using that I don’t even realize hurts others and in some cases makes them feel inferior. I even noticed that I’ve used a couple on my personal and business website. This is a “no-no” that I needed to fix.

This post will list 25 negative words you should avoid…so that you stop hurting, belittling and intimidating those around you!

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Self Development

How To Control What You Can And Influence What You Can’t In Your Life

Every day you need to get up and face numerous challenges. Here’s how you can keep your head in the game — even when all you want to do is quit.

Erik Kruger

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resilience

On Monday you wake up ready to take on the world. You’re focused, determined and business is doing well. Tuesday feels like you’re invincible and things could not be going any better. Wednesday, your world collapses. You doubt your ability to deliver to your clients. You wonder whether you should still pursue the same business. You think that quitting at this stage is easier than dealing with the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. And you are dramatically reminded that entrepreneurship is hard.

Mix in human nature and it becomes borderline insanity to try and build a business. And yet, the reward is worth it. I therefore want to share three strategies that might help you cope with this tough but deeply rewarding pursuit.

Influence and control

Most of the things in business and life are out of our control. You cannot control how other people react to your service or product. You cannot control how your employees will show up. You cannot control how the market will react and how that will affect your business.

Related: How You Can Do Big Things

This makes it very important to control what you can and then influence the rest to the best of your ability.

So, what can you control? You can control your actions, reactions and perceptions of the challenges you face. Meaning essentially, that you can control yourself and your efforts.

Do this with excellence and you will automatically influence the people around you and the situations you find yourself in.

Override your moods

If we only did the hard work when we felt like it, we would hardly get anything done. Our moods fluctuate like the tides of the ocean. Not because we are temperamental but because the external world has a profound impact on us.

When you wake up to news that the economy is in recession, it has the potential to plant seeds of doubt in your mind. When you receive an email from a disgruntled customer complaining about your service, it has the potential to ruin your day.

The fact is that you can receive a hundred testimonials singing your praise, but you will obsess and become despondent over that one negative comment.

This means that we have to move beyond our emotions. Sure, they are important in the decision-making process and for fostering meaningful relationships. But you cannot allow them to dictate when you will do work.

In other words, work hard, irrespective of your moods, especially on the days when you don’t feel like it.

Create a calibration practice

One of the best ways to deal with this rollercoaster effect is to create a daily calibration practice. I am a big fan of any action taken on a daily basis. Not only because of the accumulation effect that occurs over time, but also because it keeps you focused.

So, what does a daily calibration practice look like?

It differs for everyone. It could range from meditation to a vision board to journaling to listening to a specific playlist of songs. My suggestion is that you give journaling a go.

Because it’s sometimes difficult to start a new calibration practice, I have included my journaling template for you.

It’s called ‘J1G’ (pronounced as jig). I use Evernote or a notebook from HumanWrites for journaling purposes.

J: Journal

For the first few minutes, simply allow your hand to run across the paper. The idea is for you to dump as many of your thoughts onto the paper as possible.

Some questions you can answer in this section are:

  • What am I currently excited about?
  • What am I currently worried about?
  • Where am I currently winning?
  • What can I learn from what happened yesterday?

1: The one thing that you want to get done today

In this time, I usually have a look at my to-do list and decide which one action I want to get done today. Write it down and then expand on why it is the most important action. How will it move you or your business forward?

Related: Better Thinking For A Better World

G: Gratitude

In the last section, you simply write down three things that you are grateful for. Trust me, this is an important daily practice, but even more so on the days when you feel as if life is beating you down.

When you focus on the things that you are grateful for, you crowd out fear and shift your state of mind to a more positive and productive one.

The punch line

If you can stick to the three ideas I outlined above, I guarantee you will develop more resilience and perseverance. You are an entrepreneur because you chose to be one. Do not allow life to impose its will on you. I have no doubt that you will be better off because of all the challenges you face. Not in spite of them.

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