7 Habits That Will Transform Your Life

Years ago I was stressed, bored, and frustrated when I had a corporate job at American Express at 40 Wall Street in New York City. I didn’t believe in my work and I knew that I wouldn’t enjoy spending the next 40 years of my life sitting at my desk, staring at my computer screen, and locked up in a 6′ x 6′ cubicle — regardless of how well I was being compensated. After quitting my day job, selling my apartment, and moving to California to become an entrepreneur, I realized that along the way I have implemented seven specific habits — all backed by research — that have exponentially transformed my personal and professional life. May these seven habits transform your life:

1) Meditate
Meditation is the best vacuum cleaner for our minds. With just 5-minutes a day it will help you wipe away all the useless and endless noise we see and hear every day especially on the news.
5-minute video to learn how to meditate.

Research-based article on the benefits of meditation.

2) Sleep
We often like to say how sleep is a waste of time and brag how, “I only slept four hours last night because I was working so hard.” I brag about how much I love sleep and I need my 7-8 hours each night. Rest is so important for a healthy life. Here are 9 reasons to sleep more.

3) Think Positively
If you have to think, why wouldn’t you want to be more hopeful and positive as opposed to hopeless and negative? Suffering and sacrifice are a part of a courageous and purposeful life but negativity doesn’t have to be. Here are reasons backed by the Mayo Clinic why positive thinking will help you relieve stress.

4) Read
Growing up I absolutely hated to read. I had such a poor vocabulary that reading one page felt like reading an entire boring dictionary. The only book I read cover-to-cover was “The Godfather” by Mario Puzo because I was so bored one summer that I had nothing else to do. Thankfully after college, I discovered that there were books I wanted to read – mainly any book that I could apply to my life. Eventually, I read “how to” books so I could read better and faster. Now I absolutely love to read. Here are some great health benefits of reading.

5) Take Cold Showers
Though at first it might feel like waterboarding, taking cold showers throughout the week really helps you become more alert, alive and aware. Here are some unique benefits of taking cold showers.

6) Turn Off Your Phone
So many of my friends talk about how challenging it is to stay focused and that it’s hard to find time to do what they really want to do in life like: write a book, learn a new instrument, start a new business, or travel the world. Yet, when I ask them a simple question like, “Have you ever considered turning off your TV, computer, laptop, iPad, or cell phone?,” they look at me as if I were some alien creature who was about to sever their left arm.

I’m the first to admit that technology — especially our smart phones — are exceptionally useful devices but I also adamantly believe that our smart phones can be so addictively intrusive and distracting. You will accomplish and feel so much more focused when occasionally turn off your phone. Here is an article about how it affects teenagers.

7) Smile More
Adults know so much more about life than kids yet so much less about living. While kids know so much less about life than adults yet so much more about living. Kids remind us to smile more. This entertaining TED video by Ron Gutman shows us what research has found about the hidden power of smiling.

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Christopher Kai is founder and CEO of KGL, a strategic-consulting firm that helps entrepreneurs with personal branding, disruptive marketing, and business development strategies. He is a corporate speaker, consultant, and author. Christopher has given over 1,000 presentations to a global audience from 30 countries. His has published third books: Your Wonder Years: Success in College and Beyond, The Incredible Stories from Skid Row: From Homeless to Hopeful in the City of Angels, and Big Game Hunting: Networking with Billionaires, Executives and Celebrities.

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