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Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne





Take Action Today

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The next best time is now. This Chinese Proverb hits the nail on the head. Dont wait another second to get started on whatever it is you want to accomplish, today is the day to take action.


Schedule Your Habits

By scheduling your day, including your habits you will take control of them, rather than letting them control you. If you know what to expect each day, it will be much easier to handle obstacles as they arise.


Do You Really Want It?

When you decide you are ready to change, make sure you really want to lose those pounds, or get out of debt, because unless you really want it you will not be able to overcome the pitfalls and obstacles. Motivation is the key to your success.


Schedule Your Day

Write a to-do list each evening before you go to bed. While youre sleeping your brain will prepare itself for the tasks the next morning and you will be ready to jump right into it first thing.


Do Not Participate in Negativity

Every second you spend entertaining the negativity of others or participating in gossip is wasting the precious time you could be using for positive activities. When you feel yourself being sucked into the negative vibes, remove yourself and get back to work on your to-do list.


Be You

Rather than conforming to those around you, focus on the strengths and abilities you bring to the table. You are a worthwhile human being, dont mask that by acting like someone you are not.


Treat Yourself

Life cant be all hard work. Make sure to take time to reward yourself occasionally along the way. Taking a moment for yourself will revive and refresh you and ensure that youre ready to continue the good fight.


You Cant Change Genetics but You Can Change Your Attitude

Dont blame your parents for the hand you were dealt, instead change your attitude and conquer what it is you do not like about yourself. Each individual has the ability to change and the ability to control the way you respond to obstacles that you approach.


Fail Forward

If you fear trying new things because you might fail, you have failed. Only by trying and Failing Forward can you learn new things that will allow you to reach your goals. Failure isnt final; you can always overcome your mistakes and become a stronger, better you because of them.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




10. Identify Your Magic Time

Magic time is the hours in the day where you are the most productive. During this time period you can accomplish double if not more than you can at any other time during the day. Flush out when your magic time is so you can use it to focus on the most important tasks you must tackle.

11. Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Only when you make the moves that take you out of your comfortable place will you make strides to accomplish what you wish.

12. Become What You Want by Doing

The only way to become what you want to be is by doing that thing. If you want to be a writer, write. If you want to be a singer, sing. If you want to be in better shape, get yourself to the gym. The best way to become something is also the fastest and the easiest, just start doing it.

13. Define Your Fulfillment

You must identify what need your habit fulfills. Maybe your mid-day cigarette gives you an excuse to take a break, maybe happy hour with your friends helps you let go of the tensions of the day. Once you determine what need you are satisfying, you can find more constructive ways to fulfill it.

14. Switch It Up and Try Something New

Dont fall into a rut. When you find yourself getting bored by the monotony of life, try something new. This could be a new activity, a new habit or even just a new route to work. By changing things up every now and then you will allow for new influences.

15. Get All Aspects of Your Brain on the Same Page

Sometimes the logical and emotional parts of our brain butt heads, so to speak. In order to make sure they work together you must placate them both. Turn I should not smoke this cigarette into It will feel so nice to be able to spend a day with my child without smoking. If you embrace all the aspects of your subconscious you will be setting yourself up for success.

16. Kick Bad Habits to the Curb

Take a moment to evaluate the vices you hold on to. No doubt you have at least a few that are holding you back from what you want to be or accomplish. Rather than letting these vices control you for one more day, take the reins and expel them from your life.

17. Get Ahead by Getting Started

If you get started today on achieving your goals you will automatically be ahead of any competition that waits until tomorrow.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




18. Its Normal to Be Uncertain

Its inevitable that when attempting to change you will feel ambivalent. Theres no way to know for sure what it will feel like when you achieve your goals, so uncertainty is completely normal. As you continue through your transformation you will discover the costs of staying the same and will embrace change more readily.

19. Make Every Minute Count

Cherish every single minute of your day. Whether you add an extra minute to your workout, take one more minute for yourself in the shower or read to your kids for another minute, make every minute count. Every minute you use to enjoy life will take a minute away from your bad habits.

20. Dont Discount Your Own Experience

Rather than devaluing your own experience and overvaluing others realize that you are uniquely gifted and bring many valuable things to the table.

21. Visualize Your Rock Bottom

This term was coined to symbolize when you hit your lowest point. Some people need to get there before they will actively make changes to their lives. But knowing the price of not making the changes you desire can have the same outcome. Be honest with yourself about where you will be in five years, five months or even five days if you do not make a change? Once you establish your low point then you can comfortably stray from the habits that will take you there.

22. Earn What You Get

Being handed wealth seems like a sweet deal from the outside, but not one lesson is learned in that process. You add no value to the world. When you earn every cent or accolade you receive your self-worth is easily identified and you can enjoy the acquired experience.

23. You Will Make Mistakes, But Dont Let That Discourage You
In the process of change, you will make mistakes. You will fall into old routines and fall off the wagon. If you realize that this is part of the process you wont use one mistake as an excuse to quit. Pick up and start again.

24. Every Action is Under Your Control

The moment you realize that you are responsible for your own actions is the moment you will realize how empowered you are. Every action you take brings you closer or further from your goals.

25. Acknowledge Your Success

Rather than beating yourself up every time you stumble or make a mistake, instead appreciate the strides you have made. By acknowledging your successes today you will have the willpower to try again tomorrow.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




26. Be Proud of Yourself

Being proud of your accomplishments is not egotistical, it is logical. When you accomplish something that you have always wanted to, pat yourself on the back just as you would any other, you deserve it.

27. Dont Be So Serious

Rather than looking at your transformation as a tedious and unpleasant task, try to have some fun with it. Whether you pick up a new sport as exercise or find a new hobby to quell your idle hands try to make it enjoyable.

28. Develop Self Confidence

You must believe you can accomplish your goals first and foremost. Developing the self confidence to know you can achieve anything is the first step in realizing your dreams.

29. Seek Opportunity Not Security

Rather than slipping into complacency, you must resist your comfort zone and instead focus on your goals. Its easy to settle on perceived security, but it wont make you happy. Only the pursuit of your dreams will satisfy you in the long run.

30. You Decide Who You Are or Want to Be

Only one person can determine what kind of human being you will become, and that is you. Every experience you encounter and every move you make is cultivating who you are, so choose wisely.

31. You Design Your Life Plan, Not Others

The only person who truly has to live with your choices is you, so why would you let the influence of others shape your character? You are the architect, engineer and builder when it comes to your life, so theres no need to outsource.

32. Dont Let Yesterday Derail Today

Youre going to have bad days, but you must not let them infiltrate your good ones. Instead of focusing on the mistakes from yesterday concentrate on whats going right today so that you will succeed tomorrow.

33. Take a Habit Inventory

Take a few minutes to write out all the habits you participate in daily, both good and bad. Once you have an understanding of these then you can decide which to keep and which to purge.

34. Theres No Need to Understand

Spending time trying to understand why you are a certain way only serves as a method of procrastination. Instead ignore the whys and take action.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne



35. Set Deadlines


You work hard daily to get closer to accomplishing your goals, but some items on your agenda always seem to fall to the wayside. Give yourself deadlines to get that extra push you need to follow through. Procrastination has its own end point when you force yourself to follow through.

36. Youve Tried and Failed

Maybe youve attempted to make this change in the past and didnt succeed. Dont let your past failures dictate any hesitation this time around. What youve learned in the past will not hinder you, it will help you avoid making the same mistakes again.

37. How to Handle Set-Backs

Many things will occur in daily that can make you end up right back where you started. Rather than accepting defeat and convincing yourself that youll never change, brush yourself off and start again. Remember, failure isnt final.

38. Teach Others

You have skills and gifts that can enrich the lives of others. Dont keep them to yourself, share them with the world.

39. Establish Cause and Effect

Every action and decision you make leads to an outcome of some sort. If you reflect on the rewards and repercussions that resulted from an action you will be more aware for future moves.

40. Embrace the Pain, Its Temporary

Though pain and struggle can seem infinite when youre in the midst of it, its fleeting. If you can grit your teeth and bear the hard times, what you learn from persevering will be that much more rewarding.

41. Set Specific and Measurable Goals

When you are setting your goals, dont be vague and make sure you can measure your strides. Setting specific goals will make it easy to measure your success and will ultimately give you a roadmap so you can stay on course.

42. Make the Time

Its easy to say and even believe that you dont have the time to accomplish something. The truth of the matter is that time is relative. It just takes some rearranging and prioritizing to make more hours to achieve success. That may mean that some tasks will get put off, but when you truly want something you will make the time.

43. Ride Out the Cravings

You will have moments when you will want to fall back into old habits. When these cravings hit, rather than running or giving in, ride it out. This sensation has been compared to a wave, where the craving builds, peaks then disperses. Understand this and ride it out rather than hiding from your feelings.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




44. Stop Lying to Yourself

The most common lie that holds people back from accomplishing their goals is I cant. Truth is you can do pretty much anything you want to do, once you break through this mental block.

45. Measure Progress, Not Perfection

When you are in the process of change, dont dwell on every mistake or misstep. Instead record the progress you make, thats all that matters.

46. Share Your Goals With Positive People

When youre ready to get started on achieving your goals, share them with positive people that surround you. They will be the motivational voice you need to hear while also holding you accountable for your progress.

47. List Your Obstacles and Avoid Them

The easiest way to ensure that obstacles dont interrupt your progress is to anticipate them. Take the time to list any potential hurdles that you may face then figure out how you will overcome them, then you will be ready when they inevitably pop up.

48. Visualize Your Success

Take a moment to imagine yourself leading the life you strive for. Whether its financial freedom, being smoke free, or wearing a bathing suit on the beach, visualize yourself as the ideal you and it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

49. Eliminate Distractions

Distractions are only a temporary remedy for boredom or stress. In the long run, distractions will not only serve as a method to escape boredom, but success as well.

50. Recruit Help

Most times its not possible to accomplish your goals all on your own. There is no shame in asking for help. Anyone who is successful can attribute it to a long line of individuals that lent a hand along the way.

51. Review Your Goals and Progress Regularly

When you start your transition make sure to document your goals and keep track of your progress. As you are in the process you can review these daily to make sure you dont get knocked off course.

52. Never Stop Learning

Just because you are done with school doesnt mean that the learning has halted. Treat each day as a teachable moment and grow from each misstep and mistake.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




53. Reflect On Your Success

Take a moment to sit and think of a few occasions when you succeeded. What did you do, how did you feel and what was the process? By reflecting on the most accomplished moments of your life you will motivate yourself to recreate them.

54. Fix Your Mindset

Its impossible to control the world around you, but it is possible to control how you think and respond to the things that come your way. Get your mind to a positive place and see how it affects you. You still wont be able to control others, but the simple act of fixing your mind state will allow you to control you.

55. Focus On Your Strengths, Not Weaknesses

Every person has varied strengths and just as many weaknesses. Rather than putting stock into where you will fall short, highlight what it is you excel at.

56. Dont Sell Yourself Short

Take the time to hype up your accomplishments rather than dwelling on your failures. In order to be successful you must believe that you are worth it, so inflate your ego every now and then.

57. Set Up a Safety Net

Create backup plans for when things dont work out the way you anticipated. By creating a safety net you eliminate the need to come up with excuses when the universe throws you a curve ball.

58. Be Honest With Yourself

You may think you truly want to accomplish your goals, but you constantly let things derail your progress. This is when you need to figure out what you really want. It is possible to have another goal that is outranking and contradicting your new commitment. Lets say you want to quit smoking, but subconsciously you feel like smoking is an inherent part of your personality.

59. What Motivates You?

Understanding what motivates you is vital for your success. Whether its a monetary reward, personal integrity, or competition. Every person is different, find out what motivates you.

60. New Habits are Permanent

Once you do something enough times to consider it a habit it becomes automatic and stays with you for life.

61. Create Good Habits

Habits get a negative reputation because the bad ones get so much shine. Add a good habit to your life. Whether exercising routinely or getting up on a schedule many habits can enrich your life rather than detract from it. Start today by picking up a new habit.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




62. Past Failure Doesnt Guarantee Future Failure

Just because you failed in the past doesnt mean the outcome will be the same the second time around. If anything, past failure can assist with future success, because of the lessons you learn when you fall and pick yourself up. Keep trying, failure is not final.

63. Old Habits are Permanent Too

Even though you have successfully built a new healthy habit, your old ones are still there. Be aware that it will always lay there behind the scenes so you wont accidentally let it become a current habit again.

64. Differentiate Between Lasting and Fleeting Happiness

Giving in to old habits gives momentary pleasure, but will eventually lead to disappointment. When you are about to settle into an old vice, instead ask yourself whether giving in will cause lasting or fleeting happiness.

65. Call on the Strengths of Others

You probably know someone who already is the perfect example of what you aspire to be. So, when you are confused on how to handle a certain situation do what that person would do. When you emulate the characteristics of people that embody your goals you will find that you already had those skills, and learn how to tap them.

66. Get Started

Until you actually get started, your goals are just dreams. Dont put it off any longer, take action today.

67. Forgive Yourself

Instead of giving up when you make a mistake, realize that you have complete control over what moves you take next. Forgive yourself for making a mistake, learn from it and move on.

68. Live the Life You Desire

Rather than letting other people determine what kind of life you will lead, figure out what it is you want to do, and do it. Outside influences will always interfere, but you are the one who has to live with yourself, so be who you want to be.

69. Picture the Outcome

Instead of simply envisioning your success, imagine every aspect using all of your senses. By creating the scenario in your head as vividly as possible it makes getting there that much easier.

70. Reflect on Your Progress

By reviewing the progress you are making you will learn what to do the same or differently the next day. Reflection will aid you in learning and accelerate your progress.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne




71. No one is Perfect

Success is not defined by perfection or not failing, but instead by how you respond to your failures. By picking yourself up when you stumble you are aligning yourself with every successful person that has made a change before you.

72. Ask For Help

Whether you are spiritual or not, sometimes the simple act of asking for help, out loud can bring the assistance you need. Whether in prayer, meditation or just simply asking, sometimes thats all it takes. Just be willing to take the help should it come.

73. The Perfect time to Start is Now

If you wait until the timing is ideal to begin your change, you will never get started. Rather than using excuses of why now isnt the perfect time to begin your transformation, instead realize that there will never be a perfect time. Start now, and deal with the obstacles as they come.

74. Accentuate the Positive and Minimize the Negative

Rather than simply running away from the negative things in your life, turn it into running towards the positive things. Instead of escaping being fat try heading towards being healthy. By putting a positive spin on your goals, you will make getting there that much more rewarding.

75. Ceremoniously State Your Objective

Publicly or ceremoniously stating your intention will let it serve as your guide during your journey. Once youve set your objective, ask yourself daily if the choices you make will help you get there.

76. Create Challenging Goals

People generally have more success accomplishing large goals rather than small ones. Dream big and your accomplishments will be that much greater.

77. Visualize Your Success

Imagine that you succeed at your transformation. Visualize yourself in 90 days, how do you look? Are you identical to now, or are you a new you? If you imagine yourself as the positive image you desire, you will be motivated to get there.

78. Create Outlandish Goals

People often make goals that are small so they seem more attainable. It is actually a good thing for your goals to be far away from where you are that way the progress is measurable.

79. You Can Only Succeed by Doing

Only by doing the work can you see the results. Learning and listening can help if youre already putting in work, but alone they will not change your life.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne





80. Put it in Writing

Write out your goals as a contract and include your strategies for success. The simple act of writing it down will make you hold yourself accountable.

81. One Thing at a Time

Pick one thing to change starting today, then once you accomplish that goal you can move onto the next. Many people get bogged down by wanting to change too many things at one time. Focus on the most important thing first.

82. Figure Out Your Success Pattern

Look back at other examples when you have succeeded. If you can determine a pattern that has worked for you in the past, apply it to your current transformation. This formula worked for you before and it will again.

83. Take Small Steps

Taking monumental strides to accomplish your goals can seem daunting. Instead take a small step everyday and soon you will be right where you want to be.

84. Track Your Progress

Sometimes the changes you make will be subtle. By tracking the progress you make, no matter how small, you will see what is working and what isnt.

85. Learn From Your Mistakes

If you are conscious of the missteps and mistakes you make along your journey, it will be much easier to recognize before you make them next time.

86. Increase Awareness

It will be easy to fall into old habits. Sometimes its as simple as calling on someone close to you to remind you when you stumble. When you are aware that you are backsliding, it will be easier for you to regain your footing.

87. Lean on Others

Having a solid support system is important when you are making a transition. Whether you call upon someone who has made the same journey, or simply on a loved one to hold you accountable, asking for help is important.

88. Realize That Its Hard

Acknowledge the fact that changing is hard. By recognizing the fact that what youre doing is a challenge, you are giving yourself credit for persevering.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne





89. You Wont Succeed Instantly

Anytime you try something new, its safe to say you probably wont be amazing at it. The same goes for your transformation. As you begin it will feel awkward and unnatural, because its not what youre used to, but thats the whole point, to change.

90. Take it Day by Day

Its easy to resist change when it seems too drastic. The policy of one day at a time makes any change seem that much more doable. You must exercise every day seems too permanent, however, you must exercise today seems possible. If you keep this up daily, you will eventually get to where you want to be.

91. Silence Your Negative Thoughts

Sometimes our own brain can be the biggest naysayer. When your thoughts start leaning to the negative, challenge them. Simply using positivity to counteract your subconscious negativity can be highly effective.

92. Brush Off the Saboteurs

There will always be people that will try to knock you off course. Whether they insist you have a drink with them or continually offer you the dessert you declined, you must be prepared. Rather than giving in or getting upset, instead restate your goals and ask politely if they will support your decision. Most people will respect your choice, and those that wont do not deserve your time.

93. An Additional Incentive

Realize that during your process to achieve your goals you are also gaining another important reward. The skills and character that you develop during your transformation can be almost as incentivizing as the transformation itself.

94. Identify Your Best Assets

All of us are good at something, find that special something that you excel at and focus on it.

95. Remember, Failure Isnt Final

Failing only represents the end of a journey if it makes you give up. Every time you fall, get up and start again, because then and only then do you ensure that you will never fail.

96. Dream Big to Achieve Big

Make sure you have lofty goals and ambitions, that way you have something to work for. When you dream small, you will achieve small, so keep reaching for the stars.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne





97. Have a Clear Vision

When you are documenting your goals, make sure your vision of success is clear. Sometimes superficial needs and temporary pleasures will mar your vision, so make sure you are working towards something you truly want.

98. Motivation Comes From Within

Unless you are ready to make changes, all the motivational messages in the world wont resonate. Once you have made the decision to move onward and upward with your life then and only then will you be ready to succeed.

99. Focus on Accomplishments, Not Activity

When you are measuring your progress focus on the accomplishments you have made rather than the busy work that is getting you there. If you focus on the everyday tasks that are positioning you to succeed, you may get frustrated. However, if you highlight your accomplishments you will feel more successful and be prepared to keep up the hard work.

100. Live and Lead by Example

By living and leading by example you will not only inspire others to live better, but you will also attract people to you that will push you to be better.

101. Mastery Takes Time

To excel at anything takes time, practice and perseverance. If you are passionate about getting really good at something, stick with it because mastery is worth the effort.

Compiled by Early to Rise Editor, Craig Ballantyne