5 Ways to Lead a More Fulfilling Life

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At some point in our life, we’ve all asked the question, “Is this it? Was I put on this planet just to pay bills, work long hours and never have enough time in my busy schedule to have fun?”

If you ever felt like the opportunity to live a fulfilling life was passing you by, you are not alone. A few years back I remember feeling this way soon after I received a significant promotion. Although the new assignment came with more money and a better title, I no longer did the work that I was passionate about.

On top of feeling dispassionate, the job required longer hours. Longer days impacted quality family time, gym days became infrequent and my eating routines fell by the wayside. This is not what I envisioned as an ideal way to live my life and new I had to make a change. I’m sure you can relate to a time in your life when it felt like you were going through the motions with little room for passion and reward.

I often hear people say, “Once I get the ________ (raise, promotion, house, car, etc.), then I’ll be happy.” This way of thinking couldn’t be further from the truth. It actually prevents us from living life to the fullest.

However, the exact opposite is true. Focusing on creating a more fulfilling and happier life will actually increase our pay grade inside and out. Sound too good to be true?

Research has shown that satisfaction and fulfillment are key components to a successful career. Optimistic thinking leads to increased performance and accomplishment which sets us up for a more prosperous career.

Our brain performs best when we are in a positive mindset. When we feel optimistic about our future, we are more energized, focused and better problem solvers. On the other hand, when we are consumed with our problems, we are drained of our focus and energy needed to perform optimally. High performers add more value and thus take home bigger paychecks.

Living a meaningful and fulfilling life goes way beyond the monetary gains. It centers us on becoming the best version of ourselves. Leading a happier life allows us to show up more fully at home, work and in the community. As a result, we show up more powerfully as better parents, spouses, friends and employees.

It’s never too late to start creating the life we want. We all have the power and everything needed to alter our destiny. The key to doing this successfully is letting go of all of our inhibitions so that we can start working toward building a life that we absolutely love every day.

If obstacles are getting in your way, here are five ways I used to start creating a more fulfilling life:

1. Keep Healthy– A healthy mind, body and spirit is key. Treat yourself to the gift of your own attention by eating well, working out and meditating. All will help you increase optimal functioning.

2. Leave Your Comfort Zone– Seek out new opportunities. In the process, your confidence will increase allowing you to take more healthy risks. Transformation only happens beyond your comfort zone.

3. Stop Complaining– Complaining reinforces a negative state of mind and offers no solutions. Take ownership of your happiness. Next time you feel frustrated, take a few deep breaths and focus on something positive.

4. Show Your Gratitude– Write a thank you card, pick up the phone, volunteer or send someone a book they would enjoy. Tap into your heart and let others know how much you appreciate them.

5. Be Valuable– Instead of focusing on your personal success, focus on being of value. Bringing value to a relationship, business or community increases abundance and fosters reciprocity – the more you give, the more you receive.

Are you ready to create a life where you wake up energized and excited about the day ahead?

You have everything that it takes to create a life complete with happiness, abundance, and fulfillment. Looking back that promotion actually was an opportunity in disguise that transitioned me to a life beyond my wildest dreams. You can do the same. These are five ways that will help you on your journey in achieving your own happiness and fulfillment.

My TED Talk Takeaways

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Recently, I was honored give a TED talk on fatherhood and leadership at TEDx Boca Raton. As a professional speaker and someone who has watched many TED Talks over the years, it was exciting to be part of such a rich history and tradition.

For those who are unaware of TED, TED is a nonprofit foundation devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 100 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world. The motto of TED is “ideas worth spreading.” You can see for yourself at TED.com.

I have to applaud the organizers of TEDx Boca Raton for putting together a first class event. Everything from the pre-conference VIP party to the event itself was filled with innovative, thoughtful people making the world better.

My talk was titled “The Most Important Question A Father Can Ask Himself,” drawing from my experience developing programs and coaching fathers throughout the globe. And of course my own experience and trials as a modern day Dad!

My idea worth spreading….”Fatherhood is Leadership!”

After a few days processing my time with other thought leaders, scientists, engineers, gamers, child prodigies and former professional athletes, I have a few takeaways from my TED Talk:

  1. Tell and Own Your Story- This applies to a public forum like TED or in everyday life. Our lives are a continuous narrative of the impact we make on people and the world. Be proud of sharing your story, ideas, accomplishments and perceived failures. Tell it, own it and be passionate about your story!
  2. Preparation- There is no substitute for hard work and preparation. Rehearse…Rehearse…Rehearse… Whether its a big speech or boardroom meeting, preparation is the key to success. Nervous energy can be expected but preparation turns that energy into peak performance.
  3. Innovation Can Be Simple The best way to approach complex ideas is to make them simple. Creating an authentic perception and reality of ‘new value’ for the audience is what matters. Remember Albert Einstein’s quote? “If you can’t explain it to a 6-year-old, your don’t understand it yourself.” Just because a topic is complicated, doesn’t mean your talk needs to be complicated—the true mark of good communication is clarity.
  4. Remember “It’s Not About YOU”– Whenever you are asked to deliver a speech, workshop, idea or information don’t lose sight of the goal. For me it’s always to provide value to anyone who has taken the time to listen. When preparing I always ask myself “what’s in it for them?” While you may not reach everyone, you can surely make a difference in at least one persons life that day, if you deliver value.

Do you have a favorite TED Talk or TED takeaway? Let me know by commenting below and feel free to share with others…

If you want more details on how to become a better leader and successfully integrate work-life and home-life, let me help you. For your complimentary discovery session…and to find out about my LEGACY of LEADERSHIP coaching program, I have a limited number of appointments available and requests for people. If you are serious about creating a legacy of leadership, purpose and connection. Contact me

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Fatherhood Thought Leader, Speaker and Leadership Expert Devon Bandison teaches business owners and entrepreneurs around the world how to become better leaders at work and at home. Get his FREE report “Top 4 Way To Become A Productive Leader” at www.devonbandison.com.

Want To Be Happier? Take The 30 Day Challenge

Here is the challenge…

For the next 30 days, practice the 7 strategies below and see how it positively shifts your perspective and increases your happiness.  Here are a few strategies that will set you up for success:

  1. Start writing a journal– highlight your key successes throughout the day as well as what a successful day would look like. Once I started looking at success, I was drawn to success.
  2. Read Uplifting Information– I used to take the train every morning and read a book on my way to work.  Occasionally a newspaper will be sitting  around and I’ll always open up and read the sports section first. A friend once asked why I read the sports section first and I told him “when I wake up, I’d much rather read about mans accomplishments then mans failures.”  So, read a book or listen to a cd that inspires you and positively affects your spirit.
  3. Write a Gratitude List– Gratitude in my attitude always helps me with my day.  Sometimes the adversities in life are so acute, that they seem unbearable.  To change this outlook, sit down and take time to write down the things in your life that you appreciate, make you happy and are grateful for.  Whenever I write a gratitude list, my perspective usually changes for the positive.
  4. Smile and Laugh – its a biological fact that laughter boosts the immense system, releases endorphins and improves blood flow to the heart.  So laugh and smile more and if you can try and make someone else laugh and smile as well!
  5. Help Someone– Take on the responsibility of being a mentor or a coach.  Being of service to someone else often triggers the most rewarding and soul satisfying feelings inside. Helping others takes us outside of ourselves and our own motives.
  6. THANK YOU– Take time to visit, call or write someone and tell them thank you.  I take time to thank mentors, family members and friends for the positive influence they have had on me.  They appreciate it and you will feel good about doing it.
  7. Surround Yourself with Positive People– The people you spend the most time with are the ones that influence you the most!

You’ll be amazed at the results you get from practicing these principles for 30 straight days. “Change your perspective and you will change your reality”

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The Devon Bandison Company

www.devonbandison.com

Ph: 212.660.2950

What Fatherhood Taught Me About Leadership

Fatherhood! So I’m working on 3 hours of sleep, during which I was restless 8x. Well at least that’s what my Fitbit is telling me.

My 3 1/2 year old, who decided to sleep in the bed with me last night, woke up in the middle of the night and started running in place on the bed.  Only because of years of parenting under my belt did I recognize this form of non verbal communication as an opportunity to ask “do you need to go to the bathroom?”  He quietly answered yes, I patiently escorted him to the bathroom and we returned to bed.   Continue reading “What Fatherhood Taught Me About Leadership”

Fathers: 7 Reason Why Quality Time With Your Child Matters

It is impossible to define fatherhood in one picture, definition or example.  You have various degrees of father involvement and engagement. You have some fathers who live with their children and some who live outside the home.  Some fathers are married, some divorced and some who have never been married to the child’s mother.  In addition, you may have step fathers, adoptive fathers, and foster fathers; all of whom play a role in child rearing.  With the diversity of the fatherhood role it is important to look at the ways that father engagement plays in positive outcomes in children.

Continue reading “Fathers: 7 Reason Why Quality Time With Your Child Matters”

5 Things I Experienced During A 10 Day Ayurveda Cleanse

First off, let me say I was never the “lets do a cleanse type of guy!”  While over the past few years I’ve becoming increasingly aware of taking care of this vehicle called a body, I need to let you know where I’m coming from.  Cleansing wasn’t something that was discussed too much in the circles I ran in,

Continue reading “5 Things I Experienced During A 10 Day Ayurveda Cleanse”

“It was all a dream…” 3 ways to Develop your Strengths

On the anniversary of one of my favorite rappers, Biggie Smalls aka Notorious B.I.G’s death; I’ve been reflecting on the relevance of a quote he had in his song “Juicy.”  This song in retrospect spoke to important lessons about finding and developing your strengths in order to live a life beyond any you can imagine.  The lyrics of the song went as follows:

“It was all a Dream, I used to read Word Up Magazine, Salt and Pepper and Heavy D up in the limousine.  Hanging pictures on my wall, every Saturday, Rap Attack, Mr. Magic, Marley Marl.”

Whether consciously or subconsciously the message behind Biggie’s words ring true today for those hoping to discover or develop their strengths.  My personal and professional experience with self-improvement, leadership, strength finding and building a successful life has given me the opportunity to study and speak about the subject of strength building in various forums.  Anyone who is trying to develop their own personal strengths in hopes of living their dream life can take the following lessons from his lyrics:

  1. Visualize“Hanging pictures on my wall” If you don’t dare to visualize what success looks like to you, then how will you attain it? Take time to write down what your strengths are and what success would look like to you in 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, 3 years and 5 years.  If you can’t visualize what a successful life will look, taste, smell and feel like, how will you ever achieve it? Use pictures and images that inspire you and look for things that are exciting.  If you are passionate about your work, it doesn’t feel as much like work; it feels like you are in your element and your strengths will develop as a result.
  2.  Research- “I used to read word up magazine.” If you have a goal of being an accountant than you need to research how people in your field became accountants.  My passion is coaching, workshops, trainings and public speaking so I began researching the people in the field that were doing the same.  Market research will tell you what is relevant and allow you to see what is out there.  Research can show you who if anyone in your profession is doing similar things that you would like to do.  Sometimes we think we need to not only reinvent the wheel but the entire car.  Take your time and study your profession in order to develop.
  3. Consistency- “Every Saturday, Rap Attack, Mr. Magic, Marley Marl.” Successful people take time to develop their strengths and skill set.  You can be naturally good at something but that will only take you so far.  Consistently developing your strengths is vital because there is always someone who will be just as hungry for success as you.  Study your profession or passion, attend workshops, coffee chats, and read literature.  We are in an age where information is at our fingertips, so take advantage of it and try to do something every day towards developing your strengths.

Over the past few years, I have spent lot of time cultivating my strengths and helping create a life beyond any I could have imagined.  I’ve been told by mentors to write down goals that I have for myself, and someday I’ll look back on that list of goals and see that I was cheating myself.  And that’s exactly what had happened, I’d been cheating myself.  Mostly because I never dared to dream that “impossible dream.”  In this process of self discovery, I’ve slowly started moving into a life and career that matched my dreams and strengths.  I’ve tried to give voice a voice to the voiceless, give hope to the hopeless, and give strength to those who are struggling.  However, there came a point where I felt that my individual strengths, talents and dreams were being underutilized thus short circuiting my growth and development.  The decision was to either remain complacent or make a change!  This is the point when I had to Visualize, Research and Consistently work on my skills.  The importance of taking time to develop my gift and follow my passion has been the greatest undertaking of my career.  But I had to make the decision to chase this dream of mine and put the time and effort in.  I knew that I needed to seek help from those who had experience and ask them to mentor me.  Their time, support and encouragement has been vital to the process and for that I am eternally grateful.  So take the time and be good to yourself, you are worth it.  You have a unique skill that can be cultivated to maximize your potential.  What are you waiting for? Visualize, Research and Be Consistent! And Dream the Impossible… Aubrey Hepburn once said “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says I’m possible.”