Nick Exposed

A Creative Community Hosted By Photog/Designer Nick Mayo

Archive for the tag “Success”

Authentically ME!!

“When you are real in your music, people know it and they feel your authenticity.” -Wynonna Judd

Your different then every other person on the planet, thats the obvious part. The not so obvious part is that’s a great thing! Far to often we look at this like its some sort of flaw, like we need to be exactly like everyone else. Otherwise we wont fit in, or we wont be thought of as cool, smart, talented, sexy. BULLSHIT! It is our uniqueness and authenticity that draws people in. It is our bold self expression that makes us cool and trendy. There is no cool in conforming with others, it waters us down and dilutes our true self to a dull photo copied version of someone else, then you wander around trying to fit in then trying to fit in and then trying to fit in. Its a never ending cycle of you molding yourself to fit into someone else’s life.

“It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.” -Herman Melville

We get caught up to much in what others think. Honestly it causes un-needed stress in your life trying to live up to other peoples standards for who they think you should be. Here’s a tip… Most of the time they have no clue who they’re suppose to be let alone who you should be. So many people wander around aimlessly not knowing their true selves because they’re to busy trying to be someone else.

Now, Im not saying all imitation is a bad thing. Were often told to stand on the shoulders of Giants. Some of the best ideas were built off the ideas of others, but they were only improved upon by adding an extra dash the special ingredient… originality. To imitate something and improve upon the idea in your own way is no longer imitation, but authenticity and originality. Read more…

Taking your brand to the next level in 2012

I always get so excited around this time of year. I am filled with such gratitude as I reflect on the year that has just passed! Its like looking at a beautiful painting with such awe inspiring contrast. Every year has its deep deep shadows and its nearly exploding highlights. Each year has its own blistering vibrance and tack sharp detail that can evoke such a wide gammit of emotions! With running a business of my own its almost like being able to observe the beauty of two perfectly imperfect masterpieces that I have created in the most recent of 365 days.

With that being said, this time of year is also the time to reflect and take note of the years “failures” and successes. And over the last few months I have been doing just that, addressing the highs and lows of my personal business and life, and tweeking my plans and strategies going into 2012. With my planning I have come across 10 keys that I will be using to ensure the New Year will be raising the bar in a big way, not only in my business but in the businesses in which I assist as well.

If your an Entreprenuer or Business owner of sorts I think these tips and strategies will help you make a big bang in 2012 as well.

  1. Set Goals!

Alright I know this one is a bit obvious, but you would be suprised at how many people fail to set Real Measurable Goals that actually have a chance at being obtained. Most everyone sets goals going into the New Year, but most are so vague that they are often lost by the end of January.

  • Make sure you Goal has a specific deadline and details so that you can evaluate progress as you move into the year.
  • Find ways to hold yourself accountable to your goals, or if your not that great at keeping yourself in check yet seek out a friend to take on the task.
  • Be flexible. At times there are going to be things that may take priority over your goal (ex. Health bills come up when your working on building your savings). Don’t beat yourself up over things you cant change. Simply re-evaluate your goal and current situation and go from there
  • Reward yourself when youve made large strides toward the completion of your goal. Recognition feels good, even when its from yourself.

2.  Socialize

  • If you run or own a business I hope you are utilizing the wonderful social media tools we have at our disposal these days. We are blessed with so much FREE marketing its a wonder why everyone hasn’t jumped in to take full advantage of it yet.
  • Don’t forget to socialize with others in your same field/industry. Of course its important to connect and communicate with your current and potential clients, but when connecting with a wider peer group in your industry it opens an array of new doors you may have never thought possible.
  • Here’s a brief list of the most popular Social Media platforms that I would suggest going into 2012
  • Facebook
  • Google+
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter

3.  Network

  • Where as my last tip was more focused on online socializing, this is more so on in person networking. having an online presence is extremely important these days, but nothing beats a warm smile and a friendly handshake to build a solid professional relationship.
  • Get out there and build powerful relationships in your field with peers and potential clients.
  • Attend Networking Groups, Fundraisers, and other meetups in your area (Or out of your area if your looking to expand) and share your gift with others.

4.  Plan Ahead

  • This is huge, often times we get so busy with the hectic schedule coming up over the next few weeks or months that we forget to work on the big picture. Then what happens is we work our way through the busy months and when we lift our head its a empty calendar that we have to create from scratch all over again.
  • With my position I’m  a man of MANY hats, I run all aspects of my Studio as well as consult and assist with a Charity and a Coaching/Speaking business of a great friend of mine Jon Vroman. Just the other day Jon and I were laughing at the fact that a decent amount of the work we are doing right now, wont even yield a return until 2013 or beyond. That’s one of the many things I love about Jon is he see’s things at an aerial view and sees the full picture, and because of that he has the comfort of not having to worry if the business is going to be running next year.
  • Plan ahead, because as they say “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail”.

5.  Bring value to those around you

  • Its amazing how many businesses are all about take take take. This is the kind of mentality that will loose clients and followers in a heart beat.
  • Part of my job is to work on developing a following for particular brands. To come up with strategies to gain raving fans and build a loyal following. The easiest way to do this is add an insane amount of value to peoples lives. And here’s the magic words… do it for free!
  • I’ll illustrate this idea with an example from earlier this year. With my design and creative position I invest in training programs for the year so that I can keep up with latest trends and technology, as well as of course continue to learn in new and exciting areas. For the last couple years I have been using an excellent training program that I was very pleased with and have renewed each year, until around September when I found a new training group that not only offers similar training for a yearly rate like the previous but also has 4 or 5 weekly FREE podcast and training sessions on various topics that relate to what I do. Needless to say I’ve switched over to the new training program, and here’s the kicker… It costs a considerable amount more then the last training. However I am extremely happy with not only the content that I pay for, but also the content that I have access to for free!

6.  Embrace New Ideas and Trends

  • One of the wonders of today is how fast everything is changing. Think about the internet, which has only been around for about 20 years! Just a few years ago we were using dial up (makes me cringe to say those words haha). Now days were surfing the web at lightning speeds, just about everyone nowadays has the internet in there CELL PHONE!!
  • Far to often we find ourselves avoiding change, where as instead we should be embracing new ideas and trends. This is something I did in 2011 with facebook fan pages. Who knew that you could make money by designing a page for facebook and then post related content on the page! I would have missed out on this extraordinary opportunity if I hadn’t been open to new ideas.

7.  Stay on top of your Health

  • This is a big one that I am attacking going into 2012. Just 5 months ago I was living in Virginia Beach eating delicious organic foods and being aware of what I was putting into my body. Unfortunately Ive let that slip a bit moving back to Michigan. Just today I had Taco Bell for lunch and if you’ve ever been on a detox diet and went back to eating fast food or anything like that then you know the effects improper food has on your body.
  • Its very difficult to reach your goals if your energy and health goes out the window.
  • Eat Healthy, Exercise, and get enough sleep to restore your levels to run on all cylinders the next day.

8.  Create your success

  • Be Proactive in your approach to the New Year. You cant sit there and expect success to fall in your lap. A topic that Ive spoke on before is “The Law of Attraction”, and how the idea that if you just want something hard enough it will magically happen or appear. Bull Sh*t! You can practice your wishful thinking all you want, but your still going to have to go out and create the success your looking for. My point is dont sit around waiting for your success to bump into you at the market, go out there and grab that success by the balls and make it your… I digress.

9.  Challenge yourself

  • This is at the top of my list of things that keep me up at night when thinking about 2012! I am so excited about the challenges that I have already put in place going into 2012 as well as those that will come up along the way.
  • Take time to push yourself out of your comfort zone this year. Take that big leap in your business that you have been afraid of. Go get that client you have been telling everyone you will talk to one day. Learn that new skill. Whatever it may be just push yourself past your comfort level and watch yourself grow.

10.  Live Life and Love Life

  • Live life to it absolute fullest!
  • We were built to be able to experience all that this world has to offer, take advantage of it! Live your life at full volume!
  • Love the life you were blessed with!
  • No matter what your situation, understand that you live an extraordinary life. Embrace the adversity that comes into your life and just know that its making your story unique to you!

I hope this helps as you move into the New Year.

Happy New Year

~Nick Mayo

When in Rome Dude!

This year has had many exciting highlights thus far. One of these highlights would have to include my recent move, at the beginning of this year, from a small farm town in Michigan to a drastically different beach town just outside Virginia Beach, Virginia. It was a very exciting move for me, as I have always dreamt of enjoying beach life. In fact as I write this post, I sit in a hammock on the beach watching the sun set! I don’t take it for granted one bit, and am grateful everyday to be in this position.

This weekend my good friend and neighbor, Clinton, had some friends and family out from his home state of West Virginia. Great guys, who I now have the pleasure of calling friends. One of the things I noticed happen throughout this weekend though, was that his friends kept pointing out various ways in which they seen Clinton had changed since living back home not but six months ago. They pointed out things like how he uses “Dude” quit often, and never used to use it back home. We retaliated with the joking idea that when you live on the beach you have to use the terms “Dude” “Man” and “Bro”, and that its just part of beach life. They continued to point out how we didn’t like to be indoors, and spent the vast majority of the weekend outside being active on the beach, not that it was an issue but an observation none the less. Again we explained it comes with the territory.

These comments got me thinking about a message I used to deliver to my Sales Reps, when I was a District Manager with Vector Marketing and Cutco Cutlery, about how we are, as W. Clement Stone so excellently put it, “Products of our environment”. Now if you’ve read my previous posts, you know I talk a lot about the topic my favorite author Matthew Kelly calls becoming the Best-version-of-yourself. So the main questions to ask yourself here are, “What kind of Environment am I placing myself in?” and “Is this Environment moving me closer to my goals or my best self?”. Just as living on the beach has in ways altered the way my friends and I speak and spend our time, the environments we place ourselves in on a daily basis mold and shape the way we think and act.

“Man is a Child of his environment” ~Shinichi Suzuki

My previous post talked about the decisions we make in life and how we can control these decisions and use them to move us closer to our best selves. What kind of environment we choose to place ourselves in is quit possibly one of the most important decisions we can make in our journey. Our mood, attitude, productivity as well as a great deal of other variables are often directly related to our current environment. Its easier to make wise choices in life, or have a more positive attitude, when you’ve placed yourself in a proper environment that not only allows this type of behavior, but also promotes it. In fact, more times than not, a simple change in environment can catapult you towards your goals and visions, as well as give you a whole new attitude on a current problem, project, or even just life in general. At the same time an improper change in environment can drastically hinder your ability to achieve your objectives or obtain your goals.

“There are two ways of being creative. One can sing and dance. Or one can create an environment in which singers and dancers flourish.” ~Warren G. Bennis

Often times people assume, when discussing this subject, that their environment consists of just the place setting that they are in. Though this is a part of your environmental influence, theres so much more to it. Simply put, your environment is EVERYTHING that you subject yourself to! The place setting you put yourself in, the shows you watch on television, the music you listen to, the people you place around you, the books you read etc. Notice how each of these examples are worded, because the truth is you control these variables. You choose what you will watch on t.v., or if you even watch t.v. You choose which people you will give your time too, and which you will limit time with. Creating the proper environment for your success will eventually turn into a second nature habit, but like any other habit it must first be practiced consciously on a consistent basis. After being aware of your surroundings and responding with whatever change may be necessary you will begin to see the benefits that a proper surrounding will have on all areas of your life.

In future posts we will discuss environments in your life right now that may be effecting your attitude, creativity, productivity, as well as your energy and passion.

Feel free to leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the subject, as well as any personal stories in which you witnessed the power of your environment whether for the better or worse. Also be sure to subscribe to the blog in order to be one of the first to be alerted when a new post arrives. Thank you for sharing your time to look into this subject with me. Until the next post Enjoy the Journey!

Live Life :: Love Life
~Nick

Decisions Decisions

We do it hundreds of times through out the day… Often times without even giving it much thought. It has shaped and molded our lives into what they are right now. It is because of your decisions you have made in the past, that you are the person you are today. I’ll say that again, your past decisions are the reason you think and behave the way you do.

You often hear people debate this idea as they try and pass off the way they think and act to the situations they had come across in the past. The reality is its not the situations, but the way you chose to respond to the situation that made you the person you are today. Its as Anthony Robbins says:

“Its your decisions, and not your conditions, that determine your destiny”

Now if your anything like me this can, at first, be a hard pill to swallow. You mean to tell me I am who I am today because I decided to be this person? I mean of course I will take credit for my success’s, but that means I have to take credit for my “failures” as well. This is difficult for many people, as most are conditioned to find an outside force to place the blame of our loses and faults on. Its like when a child  commonly resorts to the o’ so clever excuse of “He made me do it”. No little Johnny didn’t make him put sand in sarah’s hair. Even though Johnny may have come up with the plan, it was that child’s choice to follow through with it.

So, now that we have come to the sometimes startling realization that in order for us to change into the person we want to be, we have to take ownership of the person we are right now, our failures just as much as our success’s, where do we go from here? How can we control our decisions in order to work towards the person we want to be?

Well, first of all lets examine the question of “What does the best version of yourself look like?”. No this isn’t a question of whether your best self looks more like Brad Pitt or Daniel Craig, this simply means envisioning what it means to YOU to be the person you want to be. And yes physical fitness, and even appearance may be a part of that vision, but thats only a small part of what it means to know where you want to go. You must have a good idea of your purpose in life in order to know what directions and decisions you need to make in order to get there! My absolute favorite author Matthew Kelly writes a great deal about this subject. It wasn’t until reading his books that I learned to focus on the Best-version-of-myself, and since then I have enjoyed a more focused fulfilled life. Some fantastic books by him on this subject are The Rhythm of Life and The Dream Manager. Both focus on separate subjects to help you live a more focused and passionate life. You can find used copies for cheap on Barnes and Nobles Marketplace section of their site (Im all about buying recycled books!!).

So now that we have looked into what it means to be the person we want to be, base your decisions from here on out off of that vision. Create an emotional connection with the Best-version-of-yourself and refuse to accept anything less! Ask yourself constantly “Is this bringing me closer to the person I want to be”. Is this burger and coke getting me closer to my six pack abs? Is watching this t.v. show getting me closer to my financial freedom? Is staying out all night getting me closer to my ideal health? By relating your decisions back to the vision you created for your better self, you can create the habit of making better, wiser decisions. So it boils down to creating the vision of your best self and respecting yourself enough to settle for nothing less.

“Self-respect is the root of discipline:  The sense of dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.”  ~Abraham Joshua Heschel

So here we have laid out the basic ideas of better decision making in order to reach your best self. This is obviously a very complex subject, and really we have only scratched the surface. Again I strongly suggest reading Matthew Kelly’s books listed above to further your knowledge on moving towards your dreams and the person you were truly meant to be. I hope if anything this has inspired you to pay attention to your decision making process, and realize that with every decision you make you are sculpting your future. The question is “Is the future your sculpting on a daily basis the future you truly want?”

I’ll finish this post off with this, although making proper decisions can at times seem difficult, in the end it is always more rewarding. But at the same time make sure your rewarding yourself with other prizes along the way. Your journey to your best self should be an enjoyable one. Be sure you recognize your personal achievements for the strives you make towards this greater version of yourself.

Be sure to leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this subject, as well as ways you have found to be helpful in controlling your decisions. We will probably dive further into this topic in future posts, but until then keep moving forward, and enjoy the journey!

Live Life :: Love Life
~Nick

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