By Ewan Briscoe

Kick Start Your Life

Kick Start Your Life

Master Ewan Briscoe is nine-times British Taekwondo champion, member of the 1987 European Championship winning taekwondo team, three times winner of the Combat Martial Arts Hall of Fame Award, trainer of TV gladiators Cobra and Panther, and founder of the Panther Taekwondo Academy with schools across London and the South East. Ewan’s book, Kick Start Your Life, is out on Monday 2nd October 2017 (Filament Publishing, £12.99)

Ask yourself this question, who is the most important person, in your life? The answer is YOU. You are the most important person in your entire world. Think of the impact that you have had on your world, it's really quite extraordinary. It's like a heavy brick dropped into a small pool of water; the amazing ripples that you have accomplished. So, you are important. You're extremely important to yourself but you're very important to many other people as well. The reason I ask you this question is because, how important you feel you are, will determine the quality of your life and your future.

If you don't feel enthusiastic or motivated - “Fake it, until you make it”. Pretend that you’re enthusiastic, and you’ll find that you cannot pretend for too long without feeling even the tiniest bit of enthusiasm. If you ‘fake’ that you're a person with high self-esteem, it won't be long before you start to feel better about yourself. One of the most important lessons I’ve learned is that you can talk yourself into feeling, and the most powerful words you can use; “I like myself”. Confidence and belief affects your personality. If you say, “I like myself. I like myself. I like myself. I like myself”, you start to like yourself. So, talk to yourself as though you're an important and valuable person. People who feel that they are important and valuable are very, very different people from those who don't.

Manage your time better, because your time is your life. The more attention you take to using your time in the very best way possible, the more you like yourself and the more you respect yourself. When we talk about time management we find people who don't like themselves are very indifferent to their time. They don't care. They look at their time in terms of days and weeks. They fool around in the morning, fool around in the afternoon. They live for that Friday feeling – “Thank God, it's Friday” - go drinking after work, don't read books, don't upgrade their skills. They ignore those who advise, they believe they’re not worthy of that advice or that opportunity. I’ve worked with teenagers who think there’s no point in wasting their time trying to do something because they don’t have a future. The interesting thing is, the more you like yourself, the higher the standards you set for yourself. The more you like yourself, the more precious you are about the way you use your time. Although you cannot change your self-esteem overnight, you can change some of the actions that you take from this very moment. When you really like yourself, you set big goals for yourself, then you persist longer in the pursuit of those goals.

Time is money. There are almost 2,100 billionaires right now, more than there’s ever been in recorded history. They’re worth almost $8 trillion. Here's the interesting thing, most of them are self-made, which means that they started off with nothing but their ability to exchange their time for money. When I hear the young people I train in my Taekwondo Academies say, “I'd like to be rich, but I don't have any money”, I reply, “Join the gang, nobody's got any money”. Colonel Sanders worked a lot of jobs over his life, by the age of 60 he owned a restaurant, but he wasn’t a millionaire until, at the age of 73, he sold KFC for millions. There’s no age limit to success. Tens of thousands of self-made millionaires have been interviewed over the years and asked what’s important to them when it comes to money, and the majority tend to answer along the lines of ‘financial independence’. When you begin to think of financial independence, and move it up in your hierarchy of concerns, you will start to make better decisions with regards to money. If you don't, you will just burn it. No matter how much you make, it will never be enough. If money is important to you, and you want to kick-start your earnings and get yourself back on track financially, you need to change your thinking about yourself, about your time, and about how you spend and invest your money. You need to start thinking like a millionaire.

Learn how to say “NO”. Time is a precious resource. People say they want to ‘save time’ but this is impossible, you can only spend time. What you can control is how you allocate your time. In other words, you can't save it, you can only spend it differently. One of the most important words you can use in time management is ‘no’. If it does not serve your interest, if it's not one of the best things you can do, if it's not consistent with the highest return on your investment of your time and energy, then just say no.

Don't worry about what other people think about you because, in truth, nobody is thinking about you. Never do or not do something because you're concerned about the opinions of others. If you knew how little other people thought about you, you would be insulted.

You can only increase the value of a relationship by putting more time into it. Just like nurturing the health of a plant by giving it more water, sunshine and fertiliser, the way to build healthy relationships is to invest more time. If you want to improve the quality of your relationship with your spouse or your children, put more time in. The more time you put in to your relationship with a client or friend, the better the relationship. Gifts and cards do not have the same impact on relationships as time.

Winners take the first step. Losers always have an excuse. It doesn't mean winners jump off a cliff without thinking, it means they take the first step, and then second step will appear and the third... One day you’ll look back and realise you have accomplished extraordinary things. If you think someone is ‘lucky’, look again – they’ve probably worked hard, after taking that first step, and put a lot of time and energy into getting where they are today.

The richest person in the world gets up in the morning with 24 beautiful hours. Motivational speaker Ed Foreman used to say a wonderful thing, “Every morning, the ferry arrives like the milkman used to and drops off 24 beautiful little hours”. When you get up in the morning, whatever time you get up, there's your 24 fresh, beautiful hours, that you can do with as you please all day long and no matter what you do in those 24 hours, the next morning there's 24 fresh, new hours. Everybody in the world gets those 24 hours. The only question is, how do you spend them? Successful people just spend them differently. Spend them wisely and kick start your life today. Don’t wait for tomorrow.