Learn To Learn What You Don’t Know You Don’t Know

It has been said that there are 3 types of knowledge: what you know, what you know you don’t know, and what you don’t know you don’t know. Of the three, the biggest potential for your personal growth and success comes from the third category. Learn to learn what you don’t know you don’t know and you’ll be able to start making quantum leaps forward.

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The 3 Types Of Knowledge
First, let’s look at an example of each of the 3 types of knowledge. Since you’re reading this article, you probably know English – so no problem there. You may also know you don’t know Japanese or Mandarin Chinese – again no problem because if you want to learn another language you know to look for the necessary resources. But there is a problem when it comes to what you don’t know you don’t know, because you don’t even know to start looking for the answers.

Learn To Learn What You Don't Know You Don't Know

In your career, for example, you may be stymied in your attempts to move ahead. You’ve learned all you think you can, but others keep moving ahead instead of you being promoted. Often it’s because they have specific knowledge you don’t even realize you’re missing. Or if the best jobs in your desired career path were only listed on LinkedIn and you didn’t know the site even existed, you might never know about the job openings.

Sometimes you’re unaware of things because of the economic stratus you’re currently operating in. You might want to dress like a CEO, but do you even know what stores the wealthy shop in? If you’re used to $25 or $50 hairstyles, do you realize the differences between that and $500 hairstyles?

In every aspect of your life right now there are levels above it you don’t even know exist yet, and the most self-sabotaging mindset you can adopt is that you’re already aware of everything. Look at pro sports – why would a world champion boxer like Muhammad Ali have a trainer and a coach when he was already the best in his field? Why does Tiger Woods, the top-ranked golfer at the time of this writing, have a coach? Why do billionaires pay millions a year to mentors and advisers? Because they realize there is knowledge that even they don’t know they don’t know.

The Path From What You Don’t Know You Don’t Know To What You Know
Fortunately there are ways to start discovering these other levels of knowledge – use them and make it your habit to use them regularly to help expand your knowledge and your success exponentially…

  • Follow the top thought leaders online. Use social media to follow great mentors like Jairek Robbins, Richard Branson, Les Brown, Tony Robbins, Jack Canfield and T. Harv Eker. Much of what they post will fall into the ‘what you know you don’t know’ category, but some will go beyond that or at least provide clues to the levels beyond that. Watch for references to books, seminars or people they’ve learned from and check out those resources too. Similarly, follow the top thought leaders in your own industry for the same reasons.
  • Subscribe to the top general and specific magazines. Learn more about people from subscribing to layman magazines like Psychology Today. Learn about the global economy from The Economist magazine. Brush up on business reading Forbes & Entrepreneur magazines. If you’re a builder, take out a subscription to Architectural Digest. If you’re in marketing or upper management, you want to be reading Marketing Today and Advertising Age magazines. But don’t just read them – learn to recognize the clues to higher levels of learning and follow through by checking those out – especially references to further information or more advanced studies.
  • Engage those who already know more than you do. Start interacting with and learning from those who already know more than you do about the subjects you’re most interested in. Strive to make one more such acquaintance each day or each week, either online or in person. Be attentive and supportive – there is no better way to stand out in someone’s mind than to engage them in intelligent conversation about a topic they’re passionately interested in and truly listen to what they say.
  • Take courses that increase your ability to learn. To help even more, take courses that help you expand your mindset and/or improve your power of reasoning. Become a life-long student of psychology, reasoning, philosophy and the like – this is time invested in your personal growth as opposed to time wasted watching reality shows and other drivel designed to entertain while not fostering growth or even thought. Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) courses can help a lot here too…
  • Hire a personal success mentor. One of the fastest ways to find out what you don’t know you don’t know is to hire a personal success mentor. Because they work daily with people at higher levels from all different walks of life, personal success mentors are exposed to all different levels of business and personal growth. Their level of expertise will let them appraise the level you’re currently operating at vis-a-vis your goals, and from there they can help you guide your growth. Let them take you as far as they can, then use some of your new-found success to hire a new mentor a level or two up from there. If you’re prudent in your choice of mentors and follow their advice by taking daily action you could find it to be the best time, money and effort you’ve ever invested.

Learning to find, absorb and use the knowledge you don’t know you don’t know is the fastest path to a more happy, fulfilled and thoroughly enjoyable lifestyle. Once you experience the personal and professional growth it brings you’ll wonder why you didn’t start much earlier in life, and why so many others don’t live that way too. The answer, of course, is simple – they don’t yet know what they don’t yet know!


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Personal Finance: A Simple But Powerful Step To Start Digging Your Way Out Of Debt

Throughout the middle class there is a personal finance disaster looming as personal debt rises to record levels. If you’re struggling with personal debt levels or even getting close, here’s a simple first step to turning it all around…

Credit card debt is often the biggest personal debt load after a mortgage. When you got your first credit card, you most likely promised yourself you’d treat it with respect – you’d keep it for emergencies and pay it off in full whenever you did need to use it, right? Not quite the way it turned out though, is it?

Your personal finance plan worked ok at first, but then that started to slip and through habit you started using your credit cards more and more and today you couldn’t possibly pay them all off this month – or even in the next 2 or 3 months, most likely. And how many times have you sworn you’d stop using them for a while and get things back under control? Unless you’re foolishly overspending for your current income and debt load, the problem is convenience.

The earliest credit cards were for those already fairly well off, to help them keep their accounting simple. They weren’t thought of as credit cards but as ‘travel & entertainment’ cards, and they HAD to be paid off in full every month. Diners Club, American Express and a few others led the pack, and most people would be better off today if all cards still worked that way.

But then there was a demand for ‘convenience’ cards among the growing middle class and Chargex was created to fill that need. Over time Chargex became Visa, MasterCard emerged on the scene and department stores began creating their own credit card programs, usually at a much higher interest rate. In the 1960’s and 1970’s the western economies were moving ahead full-tilt and credit became easier and easier to obtain – and people slowly started using credit cards instead of cash for many, if not most, of their purchases.

In theory, that should create more jobs, build the economy and lead to greater income for all, making it easier to pay higher and higher credit card bills each month. Cardholders would make a major purchase and just pay part of it the next month, then make another major purchase before paying off the existing balance. People still made their payments each month, but each payment was more than the minimum but less than the full balance. And over time most people’s personal finance plan went out the window, replaced by higher credit limits, more cards and more total debt.

You know you’ve hit the point where you need to pay your cards off, or at least pay them down, if for no better reason than to save all of the interest you’re paying across all your cards. Fortunately, Visa and MasterCard recognize the issue too, and have a solution that can be your first step in correcting your current personal finance imbalance – the pre-paid credit card.

Don’t mistake these for the gift cards you see by the cash registers of the big chain stores. These are actual reloadable cards that are accepted just like any other credit card worldwide. And while they’re still referred to as credit cards, they really aren’t – there’s no credit involved since you can only use them up to the dollar amount you’ve already deposited on your account. You do pay a small monthly fee for these reloadable pre-paid credit cards, but in most cases it’s far less than the interest you’re paying currently.

So if you’re serious about taking control of your finances and starting to dig you way out of debt, get yourself one of these cards today – or at least this week. They’re available at many banks, some big organizations like the auto club, and a variety of other outlets. Be sure to find out the fees for the card, the maximum and minimum loads you can put on the card, and double-check to be sure it’s a reloadable prepaid card. Most can be loaded online through your bank, but check to be sure so you don’t run into any problems.

Load the card with enough to get you through each month, with a little extra just in case – there’s nothing wrong with building up a bit of a cash balance. Then take the other credit cards out of your wallet or purse and put them away in a safe place for now – if you keep them on you you’ll end up using them from habit, not from need. Keep paying as much as you can on them each month, just don’t use them. That will keep them in good standing in case of emergency, but your balance will be dropping each month. If you’re deep in debt most of your payment will be eaten up by interest, but the total will drop a bit – and each month it will drop by a little more since the interest drops as the outstanding balance does.

This is by no means a cure-all for your personal debt, but it IS a step in the right direction and a fairly painless one at that. You’re starting to wrest back control over your personal finances and moving toward a viable personal finance plan. As you see your overall credit card debt receding, use the confidence and motivation it brings to tackle other aspects of your personal finances and bring them under control as well. Your current situation stems from too little income, overspending or both – your goal over time is to balance that back out in your favor. You CAN do it – just be sure to focus on solutions instead of worrying about your current debt load or worse yet, ignoring the problem.


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Success In Anything And Everything Comes Down To Mindset

In all you are and all you do, all you have and all you want, everything comes down to your mindset. If you’re not happy with your physical, financial, emotional or spiritual state, you need to change your mindset to make things better for you.

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Now I’m not talking about Zen, the Law Of Attraction or the power of positive thinking – though any of those can help you adjust your mindset. No, I’m talking about the various filters we all apply to what we hear, see, feel and experience every day. How you view the external world and how you see yourself makes more difference than anything else possibly could.

Success In Anything And Everything Comes Down To Mindset - Doug Champigny, the Success Lifestylist.

Mindset & Health…
What are your thoughts about fast-food meals? We’re in the middle of an obesity epidemic, so obviously a lot of people view them as a treat and think of going to a fast food outlet as a fun, rewarding outing. Now think of the men and women you see in real life or in the media whose bodies you admire or envy – think they see fast-foods the same way? What about people at your gym or professional athletes? Think they’re mindset finds them in fast-food outlets regularly?

The same goes for illness and disease – ask any doctor if a person’s attitude effects their experience with their condition, treatment and recovery or stabilization. One of the most famous cases is that of Louise L. Hay, who credits her mindset with helping to cure her of cancer – and Louise went on to found Hay House, one of the largest self-help publishers in the world! She wasn’t foolish – she consulted with her doctor all the way through, but she refused to ONLY rely on standard medical treatment and decided she simply refused to have cancer at all.

Mindset & Wealth…
If you’re one of those unfortunate people who think only the lucky can get rich or truly succeed in business, it’s time for you to drop that self-limiting belief so you can start moving forward. Need some famous examples? Tony Robbins, one of the most famous speakers in the world today, often refers to his early career, living in his Volkswagen & sleeping under a trenchcoat he bought at Goodwill. Motivational speaker Les Brown discusses being born in the worst part of Miami, failing twice in public school and then starting work first as a garbage man and then as a janitor. He changed his mindset and today is a very successful man who has made over $50 million dollars.

No, you might not invent anything that becomes outrageously successful – but there’s no need to… People Like Richard Branson and Warren Buffet haven’t either – yet each has gone on to be a billionaire – that’s right, Billionaire with a ‘B’ – based on developing a successful mindset and taking massive, focused action. Going from humble financial beginnings to mega-wealth is not only possible, it’s been done time and time again in almost every generation – including the Great Depression. Poverty can be, and regularly is, overcome by a success mindset.

Mindset & Personal Relationships…
How often do you try to manipulate your loved ones and/or your friends? How do you react when they try to manipulate you? How open and honest are you with your spouse? Every one of these issues is connected to your mindset. When someone tells your boyfriend or girlfriend how sexy they look, do you choose to experience jealousy or to be happy others see that same beauty and sexiness that you do?

How you choose to experience each situation is up to you. If your spouse is really close to a co-worker of the other sex, do you choose to worry that they might have an affair, or are you happy they get further happiness when you can’t be there to provide it at that moment?

Do you have children? If so, which role have you chosen – the responsible parent, the raging dictator, their best friend or do you almost ignore them in your pursuit of wealth or outside interests? The first is the least common, because it requires the most effort. Being a dictatorial parent stops your child from expressing themselves openly to you and stifles their creativity. ‘Being their friend’ is cowardice brought on by the fear they won’t love you if you don’t let them do as they please, and ignoring them or giving up on them not only hurts them, but denies you the right to a happy, loving family. Only one of four is a successful solution, and it’s YOUR mindset that makes your decision as to which path you’ll take.

Mindset & Your Career…
How much do you love your job? Does it leave you feeling fulfilled at the end of each day? Do you get up excited that you get to do it again? Does it lead you to give your best effort every day? Does it pay you an amount you feel is proper for how much you put into it? Do you see a progressive path ahead that allows you to grow in your job as your personal growth evolves? Do you receive sufficient acknowledgement and praise for your work?

If not, why do you stay there? There are other jobs, other companies, other industries… You could go back to school or even start your own business. You have a myriad of choices, so what in your mindset makes you accept and continue in a job or company that isn’t meeting your needs and desires? If your boss nitpicks over every little issue, do you focus on resenting them or think ‘wow – I’m learning to be a real expert at this, learning exactly what to watch out for’ and appreciating them for the help? If a better career means having to move to another locale or into a big city, it’s been your choice not to go where the better employment is. If you don’t have the skills to move up, choose to learn those skills, whether at night school, online or from a mentor – don’t just accept that you don’t have the skills!

When all is said and done, your mindset is what has created your life to this point and how you choose to view it. Here’s a little mindset exercise for you. Write down what you consider to be your 5 biggest areas of concern in your life right now. Beside each, write down an honest evaluation of how your current mindset could have led to the issue. Then beside that, write down what changes to your mindset you think might change the situation. You might have to really think about the second and third step for a bit, but once you have your new ideas, begin taking action on them right away. Revisit that list every day until you see positive changes going on for you, and take small, positive steps every day.

I’m sure you’ll be amazed at how great your life can be once you develop a success mindset and take massive action to create your own success lifestyle!


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Nothing You Truly Want Is Ever Too Expensive

How many times have you seen something you wanted – an exotic car, a beautiful mansion, etc. – only to think you’d never have it because it was too expensive? Well the truth is that nothing you truly want is ever too expensive – you just don’t have enough yet! And that mindset is vitally important to your future…

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Can you see the difference between something being ‘too expensive’ and you ‘not having enough yet’? While the end result in either case is that you can’t have it right now, in the first instance you’ve accepted that you can’t ever have it – that it is, and will remain, outside your reach. In the second mindset you also realize that you can’t have it now, but you’ve accepted the personal responsibility for achieving it down the road if you truly want it.

Nothing You Want Is Ever Too Expensive

If you’re stuck in a fatalist frame of mind that will seem like it’s only semantics – you can’t have it so nothing else matters. Yet in most cases the people who DO have those items couldn’t afford them when they first decided they wanted them either. Once you accept that your future is in your own hands, you’ll stretch your efforts, break through your limitations and put yourself onto the path to getting the things you want in life.

And this isn’t just applicable to physical things; the same can be said for relationships, faith, good health, etc. Once you identify what is truly important to you you can work your way into finding them for yourself. The reverse is equally true. If you decide you will never be able to afford that big house, that you’ll never meet your soulmate or that you’re too old to get back in shape, you’ll create that future for yourself instead.

This isn’t about the Law Of Attraction – merely thinking about it won’t let you achieve it. Instead, this is about being open to positive future outcomes, deciding which outcome is right for you and then going after it with passion. After all, its YOUR life – what could you be more passionate about?

Decide where you want to be and what you want in your daily life in ten years. Where would you have to be 5 years from now to be on course for that lifestyle? Once you know that you can figure out where you need to be two years from now to empower your plan. And at that point you can lay down specific steps you need to take, from smallest to largest, over the next 2 years – and get started on that path today.

And while it’s true that nothing you truly want is ever too expensive, your dream lifestyle will – and should – require massive action on your part. Forethought, planning and massive action are the keys to success, and each success helps to build both your confidence and motivation to tackle bigger and bigger challenges. Big actions bring big rewards – and you DO deserve those big rewards, don’t you?

Then don’t sit back and blindly accept that you’ll never have those possessions, friends, lovers or the great health that you want – instead accept responsibility for bringing them into your life and pursue them mightily. Soon you too will realize that nothing you truly want is ever too expensive!


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Success Is The ONLY Comfort Zone

You’ll often hear it said that to succeed, you have to step out of your comfort zone. Don’t believe it for a minute – in reality, success is the only comfort zone!

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Just stop and think about it for a moment. Your bills are piling up, creditors are starting to call and you’re not sure how you’ll pay next month’s rent or mortgage… Or maybe its relationship issues – you want a partner, a lover, but are alone and lonely. Or worse yet, you’re in a bad relationship with no visible solution on the horizon.

Don't Be Fooled - Success Is The ONLY Comfort Zone

And then people have the nerve to call that your comfort zone? Doesn’t seem very comfortable to you, does it? The same is true when you start dieting or working out. As you approach the point where you’ll decide to get started, you’re not in a very comfortable physical state, are you?

And that’s the whole point – you’re not comfortable before you strive for success. It doesn’t matter whether your plan of action is dieting to lose that extra bodyfat, dating to meet that special someone, leaving a bad relationship behind and striking out on your own or looking to increase your income for financial stability or to enable your dreams – all of them start because you’re NOT comfortable with your current situation. Once you’ve realized that you’re unhappy and have to do something about it, you won’t be satisfied until the situation has been corrected – until you’re successful, right?

So now you know they have it backwards – to succeed you have to step out of your ‘uncomfortable zone’. Success would mean hitting your goal weight and being fit and healthy, or meeting your soul mate, or living a life of reduced emotional betrayal, maybe having all the bills paid and enough left over to buy that new car or travel the world. In any case, that success will make your world a lot more comfortable that the one you’re in now, won’t it?

But don’t be upset with the people who talk about stepping out of your comfort zone – in most cases they’re only passing along the platitude thinking it will help. Few will recognize that it’s a type of control mechanism, but that’s what it is. Inherent in telling people they need to be uncomfortable to succeed, there’s the knowledge that most people avoid discomfort to the point that they won’t even try, but rather go on being unhappy and continually maintain the status quo.

You CAN live in your own comfort zone every day. To do so you need to balance your financial, physical, emotional and spiritual health and then build them up together until you reach the lifestyle you desire. Take small steps daily as you strive for success, each day moving just that much closer to your comfort zone!


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