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Self Improvement

7 Creative Hobbies That Will Make You Smarter and More Productive



What do you like to do for fun?

How many times have we been asked this question and how often has sleep, watch TV, or surf the net, become our immediate response? Is that really how we define “enjoyment” nowadays?

Other common replies include photography, gardening, and listening to music. They’re undoubtedly fun, help us pass the time, and give us something to do. But there’s more to hobbies than just flipping through channels, alternating websites, and catching up on sleep.

“In our leisure we reveal what kind of people we are.” –Ovid

Here are a few inexpensive yet creative hobbies you can indulge in while stimulating your brain and body.


As if life wasn’t already puzzling enough!

Board games are the most common brain stimulator among adults. You don’t even have to buy the physical sets to enjoy this pastime activity. You can find crossword and Sudoku puzzles in your daily newspaper, or download digital, free versions on your phones and gadgets.

Games like chess, Battleship, and Monopoly boost your strategy-making skills and bring out the child in you. You can also choose from word games like Scrabble, Pictionary and Taboo.

Although it’s more of a party game than a strategic one, there’s also the trending Cards Against Humanity for more mature audiences, where whoever has the most horrible, silly, or bizarre thought combination wins.

Playing board games is one method of instilling the value of fairness to kids at a young age.  You may not realize it, but kids can be pretty good teachers too, not just opponents. Board games double as family bonding time and it’s one of the top creative hobbies for all ages.

 “People are three times more likely to learn and retain knowledge through playing games.”
– Alvin Topfler


According to a study done by the University of Illinois, college students’ ability to quickly and accurately process information improved after just 20 minutes of doing yoga.

Ronald Duman Ph. D. from Yale University also adds that regular aerobic exercise can stimulate neurogenesis (new neuron growth) which is beneficial in battling chronic stress, anxiety and depression.

For those who are time restricted, making your routine walks to work or the bus stop brisker than usual can get your heart pumping faster without losing valuable time. In fact, this can even cut down your commute period.

Remember to take care of your feet by wearing the appropriate shoes for your physical activities as well. Who would’ve thought sweating it out did as much good to our bodies as it does our brains?

As Friedrich Nietzsche says, “All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking.”


Here’s one way to do the Earth some good.

You declutter, recycle and personalize at the same time, depending on your project of choice. Grew out of your favorite shirt? Cut out its patterns and designs then use it as a patch to cover up the hole in your backpack. With just a bit of cutting and knotting you can also upcycle it into a tote bag.

Not only do you revamp something old, you can also add personal touches to your projects to make it more “you”. Create a sense of ownership without indicating your name anywhere.

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
– Maya Angelou


Aside from sports, this is another way to practice your hand-eye coordination. Reading notes while plucking on strings or pressing down on piano keys are harder than they look. Making your own music is the perfect outlet for releasing stress.

The researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital conclude that children and adults with extensive musical training show enhanced executive function when compared to non-musicians, especially for cognitive flexibility, working memory, and processing speed.


Your writing doesn’t have to be made public. Just write. As you go on, you will develop and discover skills you didn’t even know you had. Imagine the amusement when you read back on your journal entries five to ten years from now.

Remember a time you read a book and DIDN’T learn something? I thought so.  Whether it is a novel, a magazine or an article, reading will always teach you a trivia or two.

“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self.”
-Cyril Connolly


Apps in the mobile market like Duolingo make bilingualism an easy feat. There’s always the good ‘ol Google Translate for more specific word translations. You don’t necessarily have to travel to be able to use your newly acquired accent and Italian skills. It’ll come in handy when you come across tourists in your town. Being a flexible linguist makes you a great conversationalist as well.

Plus, how great would it feel to finally not utilize the subtitles feature of a foreign film?  Two tongues, I mean thumbs, up!

 “With languages, you can move from one social situation to another. With languages, you are at home anywhere.”
Edmund de Waal


Handling a needle and thread or yarn requires total concentration. One wrong knot or loop and your “flow” is ruined. This will help you practice your precision skills, develop better focus and improve your attention span, especially if you’re a professional multi-tasker. It’s also a form of hand-eye coordination on a much smaller scale.

It’s a beautiful feeling, witnessing those little knots and threads finally come together to form one big picture. Endless possibilities are just waiting to be unraveled from a few balls of thread and yarn.

Sewing: A creative mess is better than tidy idleness.

– Author Unknown

We all need something to pour our energy into aside from our routine responsibilities. If you’re lucky, you might even manage to turn your pastime into a full-time profession.

Professional board game player, anyone?

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Self Improvement

3 small steps that could make the biggest impact on your life



small steps in the right direction

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”Lao Tzu

Every day that passes by, there is someone who is living a life that does not fuel their passion or purpose. Each moment feels like they are just existing or living life by accident. This could be due to fear of change, or limiting beliefs within them that say “you’re not worthy” or “I don’t deserve to be successful”.

It could be a number of things. Believe it or not, I used to be this person. I was stuck in a 9-5 job, in a 7-year relationship that was emotionally draining, and I was 75 lbs. overweight.

Then came that ONE day that would forever change my life. I remember it as if it were yesterday. I looked at myself in the mirror and saw what I had become. I didn’t recognize myself. I immediately burst into tears. This was NOT the life I wanted to live. I had neglected the most important person in my world: ME. 

It was then that I had to make an important choice. I decided to take the first step towards creating the life I would often dream about. That very next day, I promised myself that I would do just one thing that made me feel more connected to the goals I wanted to accomplish.

Not two or three. Just one. It didn’t matter how small it was. The point was it was a small step in the RIGHT direction. This has led me to the level of success that I am at today.

Here are three small steps that will help you make that same important decision and transform your life.


3 Small Steps That Could Make a Big Impact In Your Life

1.) Have a heart to heart with yourself.

small steps in the right direction

Take time to get away from people, places, or things, and just spend some time with yourself. In order to truly make any step towards the success you desire, you must have a great sense of self-awareness.

What is it that you want to accomplish and why? What truly makes you happy? What are you passionate about? How will accomplishing this change your life? How would it make you feel?

Be completely honest with yourself, your thoughts, and your intentions. Having these questions in front of you will keep you from going around in circles. They will give you more clarity and vision that should help you determine which small steps you need to take.

As a result, instead of being frustrated or reluctant to leave your comfort zone, you will be more confident now that you have a plan in place.


2.) Do ONE thing everyday that is connected to your goals.

small steps in the right direction

Always remember that you don’t have to always make massive amounts of progress at one time. The important thing is that you are continuously moving in the right direction. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day. It took consistent daily, focused action. Over time, it became one of the most celebrated cities on the planet.

We live in a world that is bombarded with messages of instant gratification. But the truth is, any level of success is the result of a daily routine of the right things done for a certain period of time. That time can vary from days, weeks, months, or even years.

However, throughout the journey, you can see that you are moving closer and closer towards your ultimate goals. Do not underestimate the power of small steps. You will find yourself accomplishing things you never thought possible (and sooner than you anticipated).


3.) Do not measure your level of success by comparing yourself to others.

small steps in the right direction

Success means something different for everyone. You must not become fixated on what media or entertainment portrays as successful. A fulfilling life is more than material possessions. Understand that you can only live the greatest life possible when you have defined what success is to you.

As you begin taking small steps and making progress, focus only on what your desired goals are. Don’t allow yourself to be distracted by what others are saying, doing, or what they believe success should look like. Too often, we get caught up in what society, current trends, and what the masses portray as “I’ve made it”.

This is your life. Only YOU can determine what accomplishment, achievement, and true success means to you. In fact, one of the reasons why you may be in the position you are in is because you designed your life based on the thoughts and opinions of others. This was my case years ago.



You deserve to be great. You have greatness within you. Sometimes, that can be clouded by limiting beliefs, adversity, or just the many circumstances in life. Think about everything that has happened in your life right up until the point you are reading this article.

I want you to know that everything that happened before NO LONGER MATTERS. What matters now is that today, you have the knowledge of who you are and where you want to go. The ability to change your life is within your grasp and your power.

Today, you have the chance to begin a journey that leads to some amazing and incredible years ahead. The best part about it is that you only need to take small steps in the right direction. So take action now – your dreams are waiting for you!

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Self Improvement

Couple Entrepreneurs: How to Make It Happen With Your Partner



Partners entrepreneurs


Have you always dreamed of having success as an entrepreneur? Thoughts of working for yourself, doing things you’re passionate about, and not worrying about working for someone else may linger in your mind most of the time. If you’re married, there is a chance that your partner has some of the same goals, and that means the two of you could eventually become a pair of successful entrepreneurs who motivate one another, continually work hard, and reach all kinds of goals that will get you both further in life.


How to Make It Work


Although you may like the idea of becoming a successful entrepreneur while your partner does the same, it’s not uncommon to have some concerns about the situation. You may worry that you’re both going to take on too much and not have enough time for one another, but that isn’t always the case. It’s all about prioritizing work, setting a schedule, and being there to support one another through the ups and downs that will eventually occur.


Before working together to achieve goals, sit down and have a full conversation about the goals you’d like to achieve and the role you’ll each take on. Both of you will need to come to an agreement to keep work and the relationship separately while being respectful to one another. You can’t expect to have success with your partner if neither of you are respecting one another or collectively sharing ideas. You’ll need to focus on communication and compromising at times to make things work on a long-term basis.


Prime Examples of Successful Entrepreneur Couples


If you’re in need of motivation and encouragement because you’re not sure how to get your start in a specific industry with your partner, it may be best for you to learn a bit more about some of the successful entrepreneur couples out there. These couples work hard to achieve their goals and they support one another in various business ventures. They put forth the effort that is required of them to consistently achieve their goals.


Chris Sacca is a successful billionaire who once was fired from a job as a lawyer and then moved on to Google where had more opportunities to learn, invest, and become the success he is today. He is now the owner of a successful venture capital fund, known as Lowercase Capital. Although he’s had much success in his career, Chris Sacca’s wife, Crystal English Sacca, is a successful entrepreneur in her own right. She’s spent most of her career creating compelling and engaging commercials as well as digital advertisements for various companies. She’s worked for several of the most popular brands, including Sprint and HBO. In addition to these accomplishments, she works as an art director. While these two individuals aren’t doing the same things, they’re a married couple supporting one another while they each work hard to achieve their own personal goals.


In addition to Chris Sacca and his wife, Stewart and Lynda Resnick are another good example of a successful entrepreneur power couple. They currently have a net worth of 3.9 billion dollars. So, what is it that they’re selling? There is a good chance you’ve consumed at least one of the many products they own and distribute, such as Fiji Water or Halos oranges. The pair met when Lynda started her own ad agency and was assisting Stewart with a project for the business he was running at that time. Over time, they started working collectively together to invest and sell assorted products to the public, many of which are naturally good for human consumption.


Do What You Love and Respect One Another


There are plenty of entrepreneur couples out there. Some are just getting started while others have been in business for decades and continue to achieve a high level of success. Although you may be focused on figuring out your passion and what you want to do to get further in life while making a decent income, it’s important to understand that it’s possible for you to achieve the same level of success as some of these people who are earning millions of dollars each year. Most people don’t become a success overnight but figuring out what you want to do and how you’re going to make it happen is a great way to get started.


In addition to figuring out what you’d love to do for the rest of your life, you’ll need to remember to always respect your partner throughout the process. The thing about these successful couples is that they’re willing to provide support and guidance, they know how to communicate, and they believe in one another. If you don’t have respect, trust, and support in the relationship, it’s going to be difficult to have success as entrepreneurs together.


If you’ve always dreamed of running your own business with your partner by your side, it’s not a dream that is too farfetched. In fact, there are lots of successful couples that are working hard, reaching goals, and living the life they’ve always dreamed of having.

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