Monday, August 30, 2010

Impossible is Nothing

Everyone, at some point of his or her life, has dreamed of being somebody special, somebody big. Who hasn't fantasized about being the one who hits the game-winning homer? Who hasn't dreamed of being the homecoming queen? And how many times have we dreamed of being rich, or successful, or happy with our relationships?

Often, we dream big dreams and have great aspirations. Unfortunately, our dreams remain just that – dreams. And our aspirations easily collect dust in our attic.

This is a sad turn of events in our life. Instead of experiencing exciting adventures in self actualization, we get caught up in the humdrum of living from day-to-day just barely existing.

But you know what? Life could be so much better, if only we learned to aim higher.

The most common problem to setting goals is the word impossible. Most people get hung up thinking I can't do this. It's too hard. It's too impossible. No one can do this.

However, if everyone thought that, there would be no inventions, no innovations, and no breakthroughs in human accomplishment.

Remember that scientists were baffled when they took a look at the humble bumblebee. Theoretically, they said, it was impossible for the bumblebee to fly. Unfortunately for the bumble, bee no one has told it so. So fly it does.

On the other hand, some people suffer from dreaming totally outrageous dreams and not acting on them. The result? Broken dreams, and tattered aspirations.

If you limit yourself with self-doubt, and self-limiting assumptions, you will never be able to break past what you deem impossible. If you reach too far out into the sky without working towards your goal, you will find yourself clinging on to the impossible dream.

Try this exercise. Take a piece of paper and write down some goals in your life. Under one header, list down things ‘you know you can do’. Under another header, write the things ‘you might be able to do.’ And under one more, list the things that that are ‘impossible for you to do.’

Now look at all the headers strive every day to accomplish the goals that are under things ‘you know you can do’. Check them when you are able to accomplish them. As you slowly are able to check all of your goals under that heading, try accomplishing the goals under the other header-the one that reads ‘you might be able to do.’

As of the items you wrote under things I could do are accomplished, you can move the goals that are under things that are ‘impossible for you to do’ to the list of things ‘you might be able to do.’

As you iterate through this process, you will find out that the goals you thought were impossible become easier to accomplish. And the impossible begin to seem possible after all.

You see, the technique here is not to limit your imagination. It is to aim high, and start working towards that goal little by little. However, it also is unwise to set a goal that is truly unrealistic.

Those who just dream towards a goal without working hard end up disappointed and disillusioned.

On the other hand, if you told someone a hundred years ago that it was possible for man to be on the moon, they would laugh at you. If you had told them that you could send mail from here to the other side of the world in a few seconds, they would say you were out of your mind. But, through sheer desire and perseverance, these impossible dreams are now realities.

Thomas Edison once said that genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. Nothing could be truer. For one to accomplish his or her dreams, there has to be had work and discipline. But take note that that 1% has to be a think-big dream, and not some easily accomplished one.

Ask any gym rat and he or she will tell you that there can be no gains unless you are put out of your comfort zone. Remember the saying, “No pain, no gain”? That is as true as it can be.

So dream on, friend! Don’t get caught up with your perceived limitations. Think big and work hard to attain those dreams. As you step up the ladder of progress, you will just about find out that the impossible has just become a little bit more possible.


Chew Mark, Basic PLUS Author

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Is Winning or Losing Important?

Is Winning or Losing Important? Yes, I think winning is important because it gives people that motivation to strive towards more progress.

You see, I was walking towards my office this morning when I heard an educator from a neighbouring child care centre teaching her students.

From what I infer, they were probably playing games and one of them felt angry that she had lost. So the educator said, "Children, in life, it's not important about winning and losing, what's more important is that we have?"

She probably wanted them to say, "fun" but it was definitely not "fun" for them. The disappointed look on their faces probably shocked her and she added, "erm... I guess you're not having fun, so let's stop the game."I wanted to stop her because in my opinion, she was teaching them the wrong values.

Was she a loser in life? Or was she a loser having fun in life? That can't be the case right? Because everyone wants to be a winner. And one should never kill that winning passion from any one!

The right values should be, "Learn From Your Mistakes, and Improve Your Game"


Chew Mark, Basic PLUS Author

Monday, August 23, 2010

Setting Your Goals - Easier Said, Easily Done

The basics of setting a goal is an open secret known by top-caliber athletes, successful businessmen and businesswomen and all types of achievers in all the different fields. The basics of setting goals give you short-term and long-term motivation and focus. They help you set focus on the acquisition of required knowledge and help you to plan and organize your resources and your time so that you can get the best out of your life.

Setting clearly defined short term and long term goals will enable you to measure your progress and achieve personal satisfaction once you have successfully met your goals. Charting your progress will also enable you to actually see the stages of completion leading to the actual realization of your goals. This eliminates the feeling of a long and pointless grind towards achieving your goal. Your self-confidence and level of competence will also improve as you will be more aware of your capabilities as you complete or achieve your goals.

The basics of goal settings will involve deciding what you really want to do with your personal life and what short term and long term goals you need to achieve it. Then you have to break down goals into the smaller and manageable targets that you must complete in your way to achieving your lifetime targets. Once you have your list waste no time in tackling your goals.

A good way to have a manageable list is to have a daily and weekly set of goals. By doing this you will be always in the position of going towards you life plan goals. Everyday will give you the opportunity to fulfill a certain goal giving you the feeling of accomplishment.

Here are some pointers that should be taken into consideration in setting goals and achieving them.

Attitude plays a very big role in setting and achieving your goals. You must ask yourself; if any part of you or your mind holding you back towards completing your simplest goals? If there are any part of your behavior that is being a hindrance or puts your plans into disarray? If you do have problems in these areas then the immediate thing to do is to address this problem. Solutions may include a visit to a doctor or psychiatrist to control your emotions.

Careers are made by good time management practice. Failing in a career is often attributed to bad time management. Careers require a lot from an individual which often makes the career the life of the individual. Plan how far do you want to go into your career.

Education is key in achieving your goals. If your goals require you to have a certain kind of degree or require a certain specialization or demand a certain skill to be developed, make plans in getting the appropriate education.

Your family should never be left out of your plans. If you are just starting out then you have to decide if you want to be a parent or when you want to be a parent. You also have to know if you really would be a good parent and how well would you relate to extended family members

Personal financial situations also play a major role in achieving your goals. Have a realistic goal on how much you really want to earn. You also must be able to create plans or stages by which you will be able to reach your earning potential.

Physically gifted individuals may be able to achieve sports related goals like being in the National Basketball association or National Football League. Determining your physical capabilities should be one of your priorities. Physical limitations could however be conquered with proper planning.

As the saying goes -'All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy', or something to that effect, is by all means true down to the last the letter. Giving yourself a little pleasure: should be included into your plans.

To start achieving your lifetime goals, set a quarter of a century plan, then break it down to 5 year plans then break it down again to 1 year plans, then 6 month plans then monthly plans, then weekly, then daily.

Then create a things-to-do list for the day.

Always review your plans and prepare for contingencies.

The basics of goal settings should not be so difficult once you get to be familiar with them.


Chew Mark, Basic PLUS Author

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"Life With Woody" 10 inspirational quotes than can improve yourself

It might take a little coffee or probably a few rounds of beer or any other booze you could get your hands on when it comes to relaxing after a hard day's work.

But what's really interesting is that how do people go through the usual part of life when faced with vein-popping stress? I mean, the new age thing like Zen or yoga is one of the good things and it actually works. Is there room for the intellectual side of people who can actually smell the roses-in-a-can while on the move? It kind of had me thinking that there really must be something in this 'mind-over-matter' thing.

Humor is indeed the best medicine there is whenever you are. I mean anyone can pay good money to listen to a comedian just to make you wet your pants after laughing so hard. Despite of what's been happening, and to those who has gone though the ordeal, it's better to just laugh while facing the troubles with a clear mind than anger with a clouded vision. One of my favorite celebrities of all time may have to be Woody Allen. Now this is one guy who gives you the in-your-face bluntness that he pulls out with gusto, even without even trying. You can talk just about anything with a man, and he's bound to mock the subject and you'll end up laughing rather than being upset about it.

Woody Allen has this to say:

1. "Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons." It sounds good to me, I mean the practicality of all things does involve money but it doesn't have to take an arm and a leg to get it.

2. "I believe there is something out there watching us. Unfortunately, it's the government." 'Nuff said.

3. "There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman?" This happens to be one of the classic ones. I mean the issue about life's little problems isn't all that bad, until 'he' shows up.

Sure, relationships can get complicated, or does have its complications that probably any author about relationships is bound to discover it soon. We follow what our heart desires, unless you're talking about the heart as in the heart that pump blood throughout your body.

4. "Love is the answer, but while you're waiting for the answer, sex raises some pretty interesting questions." And if you want more, just keep on asking!

5. "A fast word about oral contraception. I asked a girl to go to bed with me, she said 'no'." It sounds, 'practical', I think.

And when it comes to everyday life, he really knows how to make the best out of every possible scenario, and it doesn't involve a lawsuit if he strikes a nerve.

6. "Basically my wife was immature. I'd be at home in the bath and she'd come in and sink my boats." I never had a boat in my bathtub before. Just staring at it while soaking in hot water makes me seasick already.

7. "I am not afraid of death, I just don't want to be there when it happens." If it rains, it pours.

8. "I am thankful for laughter, except when milk comes out of my nose." It could get worse when you're guzzling on beer… or mouthwash, and it happened to me once!

9. "If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans." At least he doesn't smite us with lightning, and I'm thankful for that.

And despite of what may happen to all of us in the next ten, twenty, or even thirty years, I guess we all have to see things in a different kind of light and not just perspective. I can't seem to imagine life without any piece of wisdom that could guide us. Whether we're religious or not, it takes more courage to accept your fears and learn how to deal with them is all that matters when it comes to even just getting along.

And to sum things up, here is the last nugget of wisdom to go by… however, whenever, and wherever we may be.

10. "The talent for being happy is appreciating and liking what you have, instead of what you don't have."


Chew Mark, Basic PLUS Author

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

It's not Them, It's Me.

A husband thought that his wife was becoming deaf each day. So he decided to test her listening skills as she was preparing dinner that day.

As he came in from the front door, he shouted towards his wife, whose back was against him in the kitchen, “Honey, what’s for dinner?”
No answer.

He moved towards the sofa and shouted, “Honey, what’s for dinner?”
Still no answer.

He then moved towards the kitchen and shouted with all his might, “Honey! What’s for dinner?”

This time, his wife turned around, glared at him and shouted back, “For the third time, I said chicken!”

Moral of the Story:
As leaders, we might feel that we are being misunderstood and that others don’t listen to us and we are always in the right. However, if we take time to listen and appreciate others, we’ll find that we are the ones who need to change. By removing the plank of self righteousness in our eyes, and ear wax in our ears, we will be able to understand the world better.

Here are 4 tips.

  1. Hear the ground more.
  2. Be more sensitive to feedback
  3. Listen with your ears.
  4. Check yourself. If you try to convey something and nothing goes through, you could be decoding the message wrongly.


Chew Mark, Basic PLUS Author

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Books on Leadership

I was searching on the internet for inspirational leadership quotes for my upcoming book when I stumbled upon this site on Leadership.

The author Patty Inglish has revealed the top 5 books on leadership which she felt would could influence the mass effectively.

Top 5 Books on Leadership

So I felt that these books could be shared to you all as well.

Indeed, many people like to find out how they manage themselves better as leaders before they can go about to lead others. For it is said, change yourself first, and the world will change.

It should be a never-ending search to make yourself a better leader, and you can start by reading up on successful leaders!


Chew Mark, Basic PLUS Author

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Product Review: Secure Drive Erase

Are you SURE that your deleted files have REALLY been DELETED?

Do you want to protect yourself from corporate data thieves, blackmail and identity theft?

Hence if you're selling your computer, throwing away a hard drive, or ditching that company server, here are a few urban myths you really MUST know:

* Deleting a file DOES NOT get rid of it!
* Emptying the Recycle Bin DOES NOT erase files!
* Formatting a drive DOES NOT erase your data!
* Repartitioning a drive DOES NOT erase your data!

Now, over the past year, I've been using one tool to help ensure that ALL of my deleted files are gone - FOR GOOD. It's not about being naughty and trying to cover any tracks, but it's just that sometimes I've too many files in my computer, and it seems to slow the whole system down. So I went to search for soft wares that can erase these files permanently.

I've only tried one other similar software before and that is East-Tech Eraser, and I felt that it was quite expensive so I stopped using it.

I then found Secure Drive Erase, and it's a nifty little software tool that helped me DELETE files from my hard disk, as well as removing all of the "undelete" information in my PC.

It's methods are approved by the US Department of Defense (DOD) *and* the National Security Agency,as well, so you can be sure you're in safe hands.

So here's my review about the product!

What's so good about Secure Drive Erase?
1) Secure Drive Erase is a powerful deletion tool, which can erase your files, folders and “undelete” data on your hard disk – in just minutes.

2) It can wipe your hard disk using routines five times stronger than those recommended by the National Security Agency.

3) Whether you’re selling your computer, getting rid of an old hard drive, or ditching your server, you need to be sure that your personal and confidential records are kept secure – or you could face fines, identity theft, blackmail and total corporate failure.

With Secure Drive Erase, this never even becomes a problem. Just a couple of clicks and ALL of your deleted files are erased – for GOOD.

4) The best part is that you can download this software for a free trial
Download your copy - at ZERO COST - today, from:

5) It's usually priced at around $27. Still cheaper than other data deletion softwares though...

For my readers on this post, you can however click here to purchase it at the fantastic price of $20!

What's not good about Secure Drive Erase?
1)You may need to work around the interface to understand the full usage. Perhaps this is also because I was used to East Tech Eraser, so when I saw that the interface was quite basic, I felt lost.

2) I thought that the programme might be quite slow to start up, so do manage your expectations.

3)It's quite a dangerous tool to be in the hands of beginners. SO read the instructions properly before attempting to delete your data. I nearly deleted my C drive!

4) This is not designed to wipe browser history, hence there are no direct clearing functions.

What's can be improved about Secure Drive Erase?
1)If only it's S$20 instead of US$! but then again, the price is fairly low for such a robust product.

2)Perhaps it could be upgraded and integrated with browser cleaning software so as to support direct browser history cleaning functions. There are definitely other softwares that can help, but to have a all-in-one software would be good.

This software is good in deleting files permanently and wiping slack. If you want to get a software that can wipe internet browsing tracks, you may have to source for others.
Nonetheless, it is still a good buy at this price, and I'm not sure how long the discount would last for, so i recommend that you head over to this link now...
Buy at $20 from this link below

OK, that's all for now, and I'll be reviewing more products over the next few months, so watch out for more great products!


Chew Mark

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Leading Effective Teams - Communicate with Them

Leaders have very clear visions and they constantly communicate and cascade these visions to their people. In his book Leadership, the first principle Rudolph Giuliani shared was his insistence on his routine morning meeting. "I consider it the cornerstone to efficient functioning within any system...We accomplish a great deal during that first hour, in large part because the lines of communication were so clear."

These are three ways for communication, so that you would be able to lead effective teams.

1. Rapport. Rapport is a unique chance in building relationships. There might be cases whereby you instantly disliked someone at first glance. However if the dislike was due to some bias which could be ironed out, you would have created rapport between the two of you. Rapport can be built. It can be build by taking time out to be attuned with your team members. Rapport can be built by the occasional treats, the constant personal conversations, and even your regular presence during team trainings and workshops. All these little actions create an environment where people speak up.

The day that your team members stop coming to talk about their problems to you, is the day that you have stopped leading them. They have either lost their confidence in you, or realised that you don't care enough for them. Colin Powell emphasized this scenario as a case of "Leadership Failure"

Hence can you find time to join your team members during their training sessions? Are you able to just have time-out with your team members?

2. Listen Carefully. You have two ears and one mouth. That should be a clear indication that we should all listen twice as much before talking. You see, all great leaders are exceptional listeners. Former US President Bush listens to his top advisors. President Barack Obama gets unfiltered information. So, if presidents have time to listen to all these information, shouldn't you too? Pay attention more to the words from the grapevine as well, because it is another source of vital information. You could do so from the smoking room, the reception area, or even over toilet breaks. These are all vital information straight from the horses' mouth.

So, do you spend time listening to your team members before speaking up?

3. Establish Effective Feedback. Mutual accountability is very important in this area to establish effective feedback. Once team members promise to hold themselves accountable for their actions and strategies, feedback will flow progressively. No one would be too shy to cover up for his own mistakes and instead seek to constantly find feedback from you. Therefore you would need to establish a good feedback platform for this to be successful.

Readiness reports in certain projects give a robust feedback platform as any delays or successful milestones can be seen by all. Routine team meetings whether conducted weekly or fortnightly, keep everyone informed about the latest happenings and information. An effective After Action Review (AAR) would also help everyone in their teachings and learning. Incidentally, I would talk about conducting effective AAR in a separate article. So stay tuned.

Are you open-minded enough for two-way communication? Can your team members see any action after you have been given their feedback?

In summary, these three ways are some ways for you to learn in the never-ending quest of leadership management. Use them appropriately and you would first see changes in yourself, and then in others.

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