Thomas C. Corley

About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley is a bestselling author, speaker, and media contributor for Business Insider, CNBC and a few other national media outlets.

His Rich Habits research has been read, viewed or heard by over 50 million people in 25 countries around the world.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, holds a master’s degree in taxation and is President of Cerefice and Company, a CPA firm in New Jersey.
 
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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Skinny Habits

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Modern societies have engineered what we call the Obesity Epidemic.

The food manufacturing system in most industrialized countries has created obesity.

GMO-enhanced farming, the mass-manufacturing of processed foods and finally, the delivery systems for those unhealthy foods (supermarkets and fast food restaurants) makes obesity possible.

U.S. food policy has created a system that encourages the manufacture of flour, sugar and vegetable oil to support the food needs of its growing population.

Even worse, there is very little education within the medical community surrounding nutrition. Medical students receive an average of just 19 hours of nutrition education over their four-years of medical school.

But, all is not lost. Some are trying to thwart and reverse the obesity epidemic, not through fat-shaming, but through education and support. In study after study surrounding obesity, habits, it turns out, are the key to eliminating obesity.

In my Rich Habits Study, I discovered certain behaviors, that when habitualized, improve health and help decrease obesity:

  1. The 300 Habit – Exercising aerobically 300 minutes a week. If you jog, this is 30 miles a week.
  2. The 1,500 Habit – Eating 1,500 calories of healthy, non-processed food a day. Think vegetables, yogurt, nuts, fish, low-sugar fruits, etc.
  3. The 200 – 2,000 Habit – Exercising aerobically 200 minutes a week and eating 2,000 calories of healthy, non-processed food a day. By blending both elements of Habits #1 and #2, this combination lessens the extremism of these two habits. 
  4. Intermittent Fasting – With intermittent fasting, you eat just one meal a day. Intermittent fasting forces your body to produce ketones after 10-12 hours of not eating. Ketones are manufactured from fat by the liver when glucose is absent from your diet. As the liver manufactures ketones, fat cells naturally shrink. Additionally, intermittent changes your stomach and resets your appetite thermostat. Many who engage in intermittent fasting report that they feel full faster and with less food.

There are an abundance of studies since 1959 that all say the same thing – diets don’t work. Research has shown that 95-98% of dieters fail to lose weight and 67% of dieters who do lose weight, gain back more than they lost.

You must, instead, forge habits that can be sustained in the long-term. Once you forge good healthy habits, you automate good health. There’s no thinking or willpower required.

Self-Made Millionaires Get More Done in One Day Then Most Do in a Week – Here’s Their Secret

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If you’ve read Change Your Habits Change Your Life, you know that the most successful entrepreneurs in my Rich Habits Study used certain strategies that enabled them to focus for extended periods of time, often ten hours at a time, without feeling drained or losing focus. This ability to focus on tasks for long periods of time enabled these millionaires to accomplish more than their competition, every day.

Since we are all on equal footing when it comes to time, getting more done with the same amount of time makes you more valuable to your boss, your clients, your customers and everyone else who depends on you getting your job done.

So, how did these self-made millionaires get more done?

You’ve probably heard of fusion and fission before.

Fusion is the process that powers all stars in the universe. In the case of our sun, fusion is the conversion of hydrogen to helium. Fusion releases an enormous amount of energy over a long period of time. Average-sized stars, such as our own, can produce this star-power for up to 10 billion years.

Fission is how nuclear power plants produce energy. In this process, the nucleus of a large radioactive atom is intentionally split into two. The energy it releases, although very powerful, pales in comparison to fusion and is very short-lived.

When we engage in any activity, we use one of two types of energy.

Willpower Energy

Every cell in the human body is fueled primarily by glucose and occasionally by ketones. The brain is the largest consumer of glucose and ketones. It uses up to 20% of all of the fuel produced by our bodies every day.

Willpower is conscious exertion, meaning we force ourselves to do something. The cortex, the font of our consciousness, is the newest part of our brain (about 300,000 years old), and controls Willpower Energy.

This forced conscious effort, however, depletes the body’s reserves of glucose within two to three hours. When glucose reserves become depleted, the brain sends a signal to stop engaging in the activity. This is commonly referred to as Decision Fatigue. So, Decision Fatigue is really just the depletion of glucose reserves in the body.

For most people, this ends whatever task they were engaged in. A select few, however, are able to ignore this brain signal and power through Decision Fatigue in order to complete their task. When we fight Decision Fatigue, the brain sends another signal to the liver to produce more glucose, thus restoring our reserves of glucose for another two to three hours.

Willpower Energy is, for this reason, very much like Fission Energy – powerful but short-lived.

Emotional Energy

Our emotions reside in the subconscious parts of our brain, primarily in the Amygdala, which is part of the Limbic System.

The subconscious is very powerful. Far more powerful than our conscious brain. It has evolved over millions of years.

As a result, it is more efficient in performing tasks. For example, the subconscious can multi-task, which is something the conscious brain (cortex) cannot do. The subconscious can control your heart beat, blood flow, keep organs functioning, deploy immune cells to fight invaders, etc.

When you tap into Emotional Energy, you are unleashing the subconscious brain’s enormously powerful energy source. Like fusion, you are releasing your inner star-power.

Because the subconscious is far more efficient and powerful than the conscious part of your brain, Emotional Energy allows you to engage in a task for an entire day, not just two to three hours.

With Emotional Energy, your ability to focus is greater, your ability to focus is long-lived and you can therefore get far more accomplished. And, with Emotional Energy, you can do this every day for many years, without your brain sending you any signals to stop.

You unleash Emotional Energy whenever you pursue anything you are passionate about. This includes dreams and the goals behind those dreams. So, dreams and goals unleash your inner star-power.

This is why pursuing dreams or goals is critical to success. They unleash the star-power that resides in each one of us.

How To Go From Novice to Expert

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Pursuing a dream isn’t easy. The obstacles and pitfalls you encounter make you keenly aware of the importance of knowing what to do and what not to do. This “knowing” saves you time and money down the road.

But it takes time and money to acquire the knowledge and develop the skills that prevent mistakes, which ultimatley saves you time and precious money. This learning process is called “Growth”.

The most successful entrepreneurs, therefore, have a growth mindset. They thirst for learning. This desire to learn is often forced upon them when they first begin to pursue the goals behind their dream. And, this desire to learn needs to be regular and consistent, meaning a daily habit.

That’s one of the reasons why habits are so important to success, as an entrepreneur. Habits make success possible by habitualizing learning so goals can be achieved.

Goals, therefore, are the instigators of growth. Goals force entrepreneurs to forge “Growth-Habits”, which are daily routines that automate learning.

What are the daily “Growth-Habits” I discovered in my Rich Habits study of successful entrepreneurs?

  • Growth-Habits That Result in the Acquisition of Knowledge – Often, new goals can only be pursued after acquiring new knowledge. Successful entrepreneurs are able to acquire this knowledge by reading books related to their industry. So, reading is a Growth-Habit. But, thanks to YouTube, they also gain knowledge by watching YouTube videos which inform. So, watching informative videos, is a Growth-Habit. Lastly, many new podcasts offer listeners/subscribers an opportunity to listen and learn from experienced entrepreneurs. So, listening to informative podcasts, is a Growth-Habit.
  • Growth-Habits That Help You Maintain Existing Knowledge – Once again, reading is the main whetstone with which they sharpen their ax. Reading, once again is a Growth-Habit.
  • Growth-Habits That Help You to Develop New Skills – Many goals require the acquisition and development of new skills. This is typically school of hard knocks, or learn by doing-type learning. Through hours of daily Deliberate and Analytical Practice, entrepreneurs are able to become proficient in skills that are necessary in order for them to accomplish their goals. So, Deliberate and Analytical Practice are Growth-Habits.
  • Growth-Habits That Help You Maintain Existing Skills – Deliberate Practice is the primary tool used by entrepreneurs to maintain their skills.
  • Growth-Habits That Short-Cut the Learning Process – Experienced mentors can shortcut the learning process for entrepreneurs. The smart entrepreneurs, therefore, seek out mentors who can teach them what to do and what not to do. This way they can avoid many of the mistakes and pitfalls that result from a lack of knowing or a lack of skills.

This “Growth Mindset” is what separates successful people from ordinary people. Growth transforms you into a Virtuoso (Expert).

By forging the above habits, entrepreneurs are able to transform themselves into the individuals they need to be (Virtuosos/Experts) in order to achieve the goals that transform dreams into reality.

How To Accomplish EVERYTHING

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One of the common refrains, in the many emails I receive from my readers, is that they simply don’t have enough time to pursue their personal dreams and goals.

I even had one reader tell me that besides her job, her kids and all of the myriad responsibilities of managing the household, she also served as the primary caretaker for an elderly family member.

Work, family and life just seems to get in the way of our dreams.

You’re not alone. 233 self-made millionaires shared with me their very difficult climb up the mountain of success. More than a few confessed that finding the time to pursue their sideline dreams was very difficult. In fact, 38 of those 233 self-made millionaires, or 16%, spent years pursuing their dream part-time due to a full-time job and a family they needed to support with that full-time job.

But, necessity is the mother of invention, and these 38 self-made millionaires figured out how to pursue their dream, despite having very little available time.

How did they do it?

Time-Blocking.

They blocked off a set amount of time, at the same time every day, to pursue their dream. For most, this was in the early morning.

This consistent, daily Time-Blocking strategy generally did not involve more than an hour a day. But during that hour, these millionaires focused like a laser on pursuing the goals behind their dreams.

In 2008/2009, I was running two companies – a CPA firm and a Financial Planning Firm. I also had three kids and a wife at home. And, I wanted to write my first book, Rich Habits. So, I used the Time-Blocking strategy I learned from those 38 self-made millionaires. I blocked off time early in the morning from 5 am – 8 am. Here was my morning routine:

  • Wake at 5am each day – 25% of the time I woke up at 4am. 25% of the time I woke up at 5:30 am.
  • I got my coffee and went down to my basement office.
  • I reviewed my Word List for 15 minutes – My Word List is a list of new words I am currently committing to memory.
  • I reviewed my Facts Summary or Study Summary for 15 minutes. My Facts Summary are important facts I feel are important to know. My Study Summary is a summary of the thousands of studies I’ve poured through over the years that make their way into media articles and my books.
  • I read for 30 – 45 minutes – Reading material = studies, specifically selected articles, latest non-fiction book, etc.
  • I wrote for 30 – 45 minutes.
  • I spent about 30 minutes reviewing my work – articles, TV interviews, Internet media interviews, speaking engagements, radio interviews, podcast interviews, etc.
  • I exercised between 30 to 60 minutes every day. Thirty minutes if it is a run only day. Sixty minutes if it is a run and lift weights day.

I still follow this morning routine every day. Thanks to this Time-Blocking strategy, I have been able to maintain my CPA business, grow my CFP business, write 5 books, write hundreds of articles for the media, prepare for my speaking engagements and most importantly, stay fit and healthy.

Consistency is a prerequisite for success and good health. It is, therefore, a Rich Habit. Without consistency, dreams and goals can never be realized or achieved. This Time-Blocking strategy will, over time (about 90 days), become a habit – a habit that will pay dividends down the road, helping you to create a life, dreams are made of.

How Your Brain Creates Habits

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It takes time to create habits because the brain must build the neural infrastructure that makes habits possible. Like building a house, the brain marshals resources to construct a habit.

How long does it take for the brain to create a habit?

The best science, right now on this, is a study conducted by Phillippa Lally at the University College London. According to her research, it can take anywhere from 18 to 254 days to forge a habit, with the average being 66 days. The more involved the habit, meaning the more skill required to engage in it, the longer it takes for the habit to form.

For example, if you decide to take up a sport like tennis, it will take you many years before turning a forehand, backhand, serve, volley or overhead into a habit, since tennis is a very complicated sport.

For the ordinary, run of the mill Rich Habits, like daily exercise, reading to learn, practiced positivity, etc., expect it to take about 90 days before the habit sticks.

Why 90 days?

It’s all about how the brain creates habits.

Step #1 – New Neural Synapse is Born

During the first 30 days of repeating a behavior, specific neurons form a sort of alliance with each other by communicating with each other repetitively. In this communication, the neurons send regular, repeated chemical signals to each other. This frequency creates what is known as a synapse. A synapse is like a newly paved road inside the brain.

Step #2 – Basal Ganglia Takes Notice

After another 30 days, the basal ganglia, the command and control center for habits, becomes aware of this newly formed synapse and out of curiosity, grows a tendril which it sends directly into the newly formed synapse to find out what’s going on. Using this tendril, the basal ganglia continuously monitors the newly formed synapse in order to determine if this is something that should become a habit. What cements the basal ganglia’s decision to transform this synapse into a habit, is the frequency with which the neurons communicate with each other.

Step #3 – Basal Ganglia Marks Synapse as a Habit

After another 30 days, the basal ganglia will determine that the synapse is communicating frequently enough to warrant transformation into a habit. If it decides to transform the synapse into a habit, the basal ganglia instructs its tendril to grow branches, much like tree branches, into the synapse area, physically connecting those branches to the various neurons that make up the synapse. This effectively connects the basal ganglia to the synapse, transforming the synapse into a habit.

Since the basal ganglia is also connected to the cortex through its numerous tendrils, whatever the cortex sees, the basal ganglia sees. If the basal ganglia sees a familiar cue, like the McDonald’s arches, it will instruct the cortex to engage in the habit it created.

Once your Daily 5 Productivity Tasks are turned into habits, you will engage in them without the need for willpower, discipline, motivation, desire or effort. Once they become habits, they will become automatic, unconscious behaviors.

Which is Harder – Creating a New Habit or Breaking an Old Habit?

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This question came from a subscriber and it’s a great question.

The answer is that it is equally difficult, if you don’t know the short-cuts to habit change.

Based on my extensive research on habit change, which I included in my book Change Your Habits Change Your Life, there are numerous short-cuts to eliminating a bad habit.

Change Who You Associate With

Old bad habits can be triggered by the individuals you associate with. If you are trying to get rid of some old, bad habits, you need to limit the time you spend associating with those individuals who act as a trigger for those bad habits and begin associating with individuals who possess some opposite Rich Habit.

For example, if you have the bad habit of not exercising, find a friend who exercises regularly. Because habits spread like a virus throughout your social networks, changing who is in your social network will automatically force habit change. You will become infected by their habits.

Another example would be if you have a bad habit of not reading to learn. Joining a reading group that focuses on reading informative books will expose you to people who have that Rich Habit. They will infect you with their reading habit.

You could also partner with a reader. Here’s how.

Find a friend who reads a lot of informative books and ask them what book they are currently reading. Then, start reading that same book. Now, you and your friend will have something in common to talk about, which will actually strengthen your relationship.

Change Your Environment

It is much easier to abandon old habits when you change your environment. New home, new neighbors, new friends, new job, new colleagues, new cities, etc., all offer an opportunity to abandon old habits and forge new habits. Spoons, knives and forks are no longer where they used to be, so you have to think. Your commute to work is different, so you have to think. Your new responsibilities at work are different, so you have to think. Eventually, your brain will force you to develop new habits in your new environment in order to make its job easier.

Granted, moving or taking on a new job is a huge change you may not be prepared to make. But you don’t have to make a huge change in your environment to eliminate an old bad habit. You can actually create a new environment, within your existing environment, that will enable you to change an old habit.

For example, let’s say you have the old bad habit of sitting on the couch right after you come home from work, a Do-Nothing habit that’s not good for your health.

Well, is there a gym near your home? If so, replace the after work couch environment with an after work gym environment.

One obvious bonus is that you will likely meet some new friends. New friends are always a good thing.

But an additional bonus is that these new friends will infect you with their good exercise habits, because habits spread like a virus throughout your social networks.

Firewall Your Bad Habits

Another trick to eliminate old bad habits is to make it harder to engage in them by creating some type of firewall between you and the bad habit.

For example, let’s say you eat junk food at night while watching T.V. You eat that junk food because it’s in your pantry.The way to make this bad habit harder to engage in, would be to stop stocking your pantry with junk food snack and instead stock your pantry with healthy snacks.

The habit isn’t eating junk food; the habit is snacking while you watch T.V.

Eliminating easy access to junk food won’t likely stop you from snacking. When you sit to watch T.V., the cue, you will still default into your routine of seeking a snack. This time, however, the reward will be a different snack, a healthy one.

Start Small

Let’s say you have a bad habit of smoking when you drink alcohol. Both bad habits. Instead of going cold turkey on your drinking habit, however, commit to drinking just one less drink. This will likely translate into one less cigarette. 

The smaller, easier the habit change, the higher the probability that it will stick. Small habit change gives you momentum and increased confidence. This allows you to take on bigger, more complex habit changes in the future.

Hijack an Existing Habit

One last tip. It is far easier to eliminate bad habits when you add a good Keystone habit that conflicts with the bad existing habit. The problem with this strategy is that it requires you to add a new habit in order to eliminate some old bad habits. But it’s worth the investment.

Here’s why.

Keystone habits have a domino effect on behavior. They give rise to other comparable habits. For example, if you have a junk food eating habit that you want to eliminate, add the Keystone habit of jogging for 20 minutes a day. 

Given enough time (about 90 days), that Keystone habit would begin to overpower the junk food eating habit because they conflict with one another and Keystone habits overpower ordinary habits. Eventually, the old bad ordinary habit of eating junk food will create an internal conflict – good health vs. bad health.

In my above snack example, eating a healthy snack will replace eating the unhealthy snack. You’re just hijacking a habit synapse – the act of snacking is actually the habit, not what you eat.

The same hijacking habit change strategy can be used for someone who watches too much junk TV. It’s easy to replace an hour of junk TV with an hour of watching, say a TEDx video, or watching an educational documentary.

The habit isn’t what you watch, the content. It’s watching a video screen. By changing the content of what you watch, you essentially have hijacked an exiting habit synapse and using it to forge the new good habit of watching content that increases your knowledge-base.

The Real Secret to Success? Consistency

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The real secret to success is consistency – doing certain things every day that help move you forward in achieving your goals which lead to the realization of your dreams.

Successful people create consistency by adopting daily habits that are tied to their goals and dreams.

Habits force consistency. Since success requires consistency, habits automate success.

How do you create consistency?

Ask yourself this question:

“What are the five most productive things I can do today to help me realize my dreams and the goals behind my dreams?”

Write down those five daily productivity tasks. You can, if you like, include them on your daily to-do list or schedule them as if they were appointments, on Outlook or on your phone.

No matter what happens during the day, make it your #1 priority to do those five things.

To turn these five productivity tasks into habits, you must engage in them for 90 days.

Why 90 days?

It’s all about how the brain creates habits. It takes time to create habits because the brain must build the neural infrastructure that makes habits possible. Like building a house, the brain marshals its resources to construct a habit.

Here’s how habits are created inside the brain:

Step #1 – New Neural Synapse is Born

During the first 30 days of repeating an action or thought, specific neurons form a sort of alliance with each other and begin sending regular, repeated chemical signals to each other. This frequency creates what is known as a synapse.

Step #2 – Basal Ganglia Takes Notice

After another 30 days, the basal ganglia, the command and control center for habits, becomes aware of this newly formed synapse and out of curiosity, grows a tendril which it sends it into the newly formed synapse to find out what’s going on. Using this tendril, the basal ganglia will continuously monitor the newly formed synapse in order to determine if this is something that should become a habit. What cements the basal ganglia’s decision to transform this synapse into a habit, is the frequency with which the neurons communicate with each other.

Step #3 – Basal Ganglia Marks Synapse as a Habit

After another 30 days, the basal ganglia’s tendril will determine that the synapse is communicating frequently enough to warrant transformation into a habit. The basal ganglia then instructs the tendril to grow branches, much like tree branches, into the synapse area, physically connecting those branches to the various neurons that make up the synapse. The moment the tendril branches touch those neurons, the physical infrastructure to form a habit is in place and those neurons and that synapse will be forever marked a habit.

Once your Daily 5 Productivity Tasks become transformed into habits, you will engage in them without effort. They will become automatic.

This Daily 5 Habit Creation Strategy will create the consistency you need to help move you forward, little by little every day, towards accomplishing your goals and, ultimately your dreams.

The Most Successful Entrepreneurs Love Their Mistakes

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“Experience is always the hardest teacher because the test is given first and the lesson is given afterwards.” John Maxwell

Making mistakes helps us learn what works and what doesn’t work.

Mistakes are like scar tissue on the brain. We rarely forget the mistakes which cost us a great deal of time, money or damage one of our long-standing relationships.

Instead of ruminating about what we do that is wrong, however, we should instead take a page out of the book of the most successful entrepreneurs from my Rich Habits researchthe Self-Made Dreamers.

There were 119 Self-Made Dreamers in my Rich Habits Study. These were individuals who devoted their lives to a dream. Sometimes, however, that dream was a nightmare. Especially in the beginning.

The early part of every Dreamer’s journey is riddled with mistake after mistake. The real fear is the fear of failure – too many mistakes and you run out of money, which means you run out of time.

So, the Dreamers in my study took their mistakes very seriously. They went to great lengths to figure out what they did wrong. Through this arduous mistake analysis, they gained knowledge from their mistakes. With this new knowledge, they went back at it.

Eventually, they got it right, meaning they figured out which actions produced the results they desired. Then they did something that cemented their ultimate success – they documented exactly what worked and what didn’t work.

This is called a Process. And, as I found in my study, successful entrepreneurs become successful entrepreneurs because their studious analysis of their mistakes give rise to processes that became integrated into the very heart of their business.

Every time a new workable process is discovered, these Self-Made Dreamers meticulously document every detail of it. And then, everyone who works with them, is then required to follow each new process.

These tried and true processes become organization-wide habits.

The self-made millionaire-Dreamers in my study continued this experimentation-driven, process-finding approach until they had a wealth of proven processes that solidified their business model and, eventually made them multi-millionaires. The average Self-Made Dreamer in my study accumulated $7.4 million over 12 years, following this formula for success.

Successful entrepreneurs don’t hate their mistakes. They love their mistakes. After all, if it wasn’t for those mistakes, they’d never stumble upon the processes that help them transform their dream into reality.

So, if you’re an entrepreneur, love your mistakes. Mistakes are what dreams are made of.

Herd Habits

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Hardwired by evolution into every human is the desire to be part of a herd.

In the early days of humanity, being part of a herd = survival. With a herd, there was always someone within the herd on guard for predators or danger and also herd members who identified opportunities that could be beneficial to the herd.

In short, herding enabled humanity to flourish into the billions.

As a result of the benefits of herding, individuals therefore seek out herds.

A typical individual is often a member of multiple herds. There’s the family herd, the neighborhood herd, the work herd, the school herd, the people we party with herd, political herds, etc.

As I’ve mentioned often in my writing, speaking, podcasts and media interviews, habits spread like a virus throughout our social networks. A herd is a social network. Therefore, we forge habits that are common among our diverse herds.

So, if you want to forge habits that help improve your life, your health, your finances or your ability to succeed, you must find a herd of people who have the habits you desire. Herding is one of the most effective paths to habit change.

And herds are everywhere.

The boards of local community non-profits are often comprised of the most successful people in the community. These successful people will expose you to habits that will help you become successful.

In your local gym, you will find individuals with good health habits. These health-minded individuals will infect you with their healthy habits.

The Optimist Club is a non-profit group whose members seek to associate with other upbeat, positive individuals focused on running or funding sports programs for children within their community. If you want to forge the habit of a positive mental outlook, join a local Optimist Club.

Toastmasters International is a speaker club. Members of Toastmasters seek to develop or improve their speaker skills. If you want to forge good speaker habits, join a local Toastmasters.

Find your herd and the habits will follow.

CNBC – How a Simple Daily Routine Can Turn Your Dreams Into Reality

 

 

 

In my book, “Change Your Habits, Change Your Life,” I introduced my readers to one of the tools successful entrepreneurs in my Rich Habits Study used that helped them become self-made millionaires. This tool is something called Dream-Setting.

Dream-Setting is a process in which you:

  1. Define your ideal, future life, via a script of 1,000 words or more. In this script, you go out into the future five or more years and paint a picture with words of every facet of your ideal, future life. The home you own, the neighborhood you live in, the income you earn, the money you accumulate, the car you drive, the amazing people who are your closest friends, the places in the world you travel to, etc.
  2. Bullet point each dream within your script
  3. Build goals around each dream
  4. Pursue each goal until it is achieved

As you realize each dream, you climb your individual Dream Ladder. When you reach the top of your ladder, only then are you living the life of your dreams.

Clearly, the hardest part of this Dream-Setting process is pursuing and achieving the goals behind your dream, or the Goal Pursuit & Achievement Process (Step 4).

Step 4’s Goal Pursuit & Achievement Process is the hardest part because it requires that you:

  1. Develop the knowledge and skills which enable you to pursue each goal, and
  2. Take action on each goal

Each of these two Goal Pursuit & Achievement Processes requires effort. Effort = time. Somehow, you must find the time to pursue and achieve the goals behind your dreams.

What makes devoting time to your goals so hard is that many who are pursuing their dreams and the goals behind their dreams have jobs which limit how much time they have to engage in this Goal Pursuit and Achievement Process.

So what do you do?

You must create a daily routine in which you block off time, every day, to dedicate to this Goal Pursuit & Achievement Process.

This routine can take as little as one hour a day. What makes this routine effective is transforming it into a daily habit. Day after day, you must go at each one of your goals.

Your daily routine is the scheduling system that transforms each of your dreams, and the goals behind your dreams, into reality.

This is why I harp so much on habits. Daily habits, built around your goals, make success possible.

Your daily routine is nothing more than a series of daily habits you engage in every day that enable you to achieve each one of your goals and ultimately, each one of your dreams.

Let me give you a real-life example.

When I began my Rich Habits Study in early 2004, I had just taken over as CEO of my company. I had responsibility for eight employees and close to one thousand clients. This new job required an enormous time commitment, meaning long hours. I also had three young children and a spouse I desperately wanted to spend time with.

So, I found the only time available: 4:30 a.m. – 6 a.m. on workdays and 4:30 a.m. – 8 a.m. on weekends. For nearly four years, my daily routine was waking up at 4:30 and devoting time to my Rich Habits Study. Because I only had that limited time, the study took four years. But, after four years, it was done.

Since then, I have continued to employ this daily morning routine to help me write five books over a seven year period. Like so many of the self-made millionaires in my Rich Habits Study, a simple daily routine helped transform me from a nobody into a world-wide best-selling author in a relatively short period of time.

If you are pursuing a dream and time is your enemy, you must create a routine and then you must habitualize that routine – schedule it every day. This is what successful high-achieving dreamers do. That is what the self-made millionaires in my Rich Habits Study did. They created and followed a consistent schedule, or daily routine.

Consistency transforms dreams into reality.

Tom Corley is an accountant, financial planner and author of “Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to Be Happy and Successful in Life.”