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8 Secrets To Success I Discovered From Ellen DeGeneres

8 Secrets To Success I Discovered From Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen DeGeneres is an amazing woman who thrives in the unique personality that is hers alone. Her words, whether inspiring or funny, contain some brilliant insight that you need to hear. Keep on reading to discover eight secrets Ellen DeGeneres can teach you about success.

1. Success demands acceptance of who you are.

“Beauty is about being comfortable in your own skin. It’s about knowing and accepting who you are.”

Successful people won’t radically change their appearance or persona to please others. They avoid the temptation to get caught up in what other people think, because they know the people who matter will accept them as they are.

2. Success demands a warm and inviting nature.

“The world is full of a lot of fear and a lot of negativity, and a lot of judgment. I just think people need to start shifting into joy and happiness. As corny as it sounds, we need to make a shift.”

Successful people don’t judge people who think differently than them. They might be firm in their beliefs, but they don’t resort to personal attacks, because they know being a good example is the best way to bring about positive change.

3. Success demands readiness to do things that make you feel uncomfortable.

“Just go up to somebody on the street and say ‘You’re it!’ and then run away.”

Successful people aren’t afraid of doing frightening things. They lean into their fears, no matter how much their mind resists, because they know the things that scare them most are often the very same things that lead to breakthroughs.

4. Success demands enthusiastic action in the face of failure.

“You know, it’s hard work to write a book. I can’t tell you how many times I really get going on an idea, then my quill breaks. Or I spill ink all over my writing tunic.”

Successful people won’t let a mistake (or several) diminish their enthusiasm. They look at failure as an unavoidable part of their evolutionary process, because they know a stubborn refusal to quit can take them farther than talent ever will.

5. Success demands self-care, no matter how busy you are.

“You have to stay in shape. My grandmother, she started walking five miles a day when she was 60. She’s 97 today and we don’t know where the hell she is.”

Successful people aren’t so “busy” that they can’t take care of themselves. They make time for exercise (play) and meal-planning (nourishment), because they know neglecting their health will only make them feel miserable and exhausted.

6. Success demands time away to rest and relax.

“Procrastination is not the problem. It is the solution. It is the universe’s way of saying stop, slow down, you move too fast. Listen to the music. Whoa whoa, listen to the music.”

Successful people don’t work themselves to death. They are willing to hustle as hard as they need to, but they are also mindful of their breaking point, because they know depriving themselves of fun won’t make them happy or fulfilled.

7. Success demands an ability to bring people together.

“We focus so much on our differences, and that is creating, I think, a lot of chaos and negativity and bullying in the world. And I think if everybody focused on what we all have in common – which is – we all want to be happy.”

Successful people aren’t so close-minded that they can’t befriend people they disagree with. They get tickled at people who obsess with issues that push us apart, because they know concentrating on our common goals will lead to a happier life.

8. Success demands willingness to be brutally honest with yourself.

“Sometimes you can’t see yourself clearly until you see yourself through the eyes of others. ”

Successful people don’t get so absorbed in their work that they become arrogant. They actively seek feedback that will make them better at what they do, because they know every new day is another opportunity to learn and grow.

Featured photo credit: Ellen Degeneres to Host Oscars in 2014/The Guardian via theguardian.com

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Daniel Wallen

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new:

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

The bottom line

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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