More than 10,000 hours. 

That’s how much time I’ve invested in learning over the past 12 years.

I became a student of personal development which eventually led me to focus on time management and productivity.

I picked up every book, audio program and DVD training I could get my hands on by all the greats – Napoleon Hill, Dale Carnegie, Tony Robbins, Robert Kiyosaki, Jim Rohn, Dan Kennedy and more. 

Each book or lecture led me to another, and somewhere along the line, I picked up a DVD program by Keith Cunningham. I clearly remember him talking about the concept of “Be, Do, Have”. Something struck me, and so ever since, I’ve kept a list of BEs. 

1. Be selfish. Protect your time (who you are with & what you do) and your health (exercise, nutrition).

2. Be Steve Jobs. Stop caring so much about what other people think. Be willing to be a little silly. Don’t care if someone hates you – because someone always will. Be strong. Say no to people. Don’t back down. Fight for what you feel is right. 

3. Be different. Uniqueness makes you special (me back in the Philippines). One-of-a-kind, limited edition, 1987 edition.

4. Be yourself. School, society – they all want us to fit in. I’m telling you to just be you. Don’t fit in. Don’t follow all the rules. Don’t just do what you are told (our race would not exist if we did what we are supposed to, it’s the people who do things differently that change things for the rest of us). 

5. Be yourself. We are all unique. 

6. Be nice. Thoughtfulness goes a long way.

7. Be aware. Watch for signs.

8. Be there. Help others when they need your help.

9. Be positive. No one likes a Debbie Downer.

10. Be resilient. Get hit down 9 times, get up 10.

11. Be involved. With your neighborhood, with your community, with your son’s school, online, join groups.

12. Be Humble. My wife’s secret to success.

13. Be spontaneous. Life should be a little crazy. Craziness allows us to see the world differently. Whatever it is you do, do something different every now and then to get out of the rut of your day to day. Dress up. Go out. Try new restaurants.

14. Be Open. Try new things. Listen to different viewpoints. You’ll be amazed at how much you can learn.

15. Be Quiet. Learn to listen. The smarter / wiser we are, the more we learn to keep quiet. We learn more from listening than talking.

16. Be funny. People love to laugh, make them.

17. Be a storyteller. People love stories. Learn to capture moments.

18. Be strong. Don’t let people push you around.

19. Be resourceful. Solve problems in new ways. Creativity is powerful. Tony Robbins quote on not a lack of resources, but a lack of resourcefulness.

20. Be excited. It’s contagious.

21. Be excellent. Why be average when you can be great?

22. Be curious. Have a childlike curiosity to learn how things work. Don’t be afraid of what we don’t know.

23. Be fast. Don’t waste your time or others.

24. Be efficient. Who cares if you’re fast if you suck. 

25. Be decisive. Right or wrong, make a decision and move forward. Indecisiveness turns into paralysis.

26. Be cautious. There are wolves in sheep’s clothing. What is not said is that among the sheep, some of them are stupid.

27. Be hungry. Always want more. A mentor once told me that there was no book that says when is enough. That every personal development t book asks us to keep pushing ourselves. He said that pushing ourselves is not for everyone. For some $1 million is enough. For others, it’s just the beginning. I’ll say this – never stop trying to be better.

28. Be present. When you’re with your children, don’t be thinking about work. When you’re at work, don’t be thinking about the beach. 

29. Be first. Being first to market gives you a decidedly strong advantage. Not always the case (iPod), but Coke and Hertz are proof that it’s hard to beat the company that gets there first.

30. Be grateful. Be happy with what you have. If you’re reading this then it’s highly likely you’ve got an iPhone, money in the bank, had a decent education, you’ve maybe even been lucky enough to have an awesome family. So before you start telling me how tough your life is, stop & appreciate just how much you do have.

31. Be patient. Something we can learn from Japan.

32. Be on time. Excuse the language, but why the f*ck not!! Never make people feel as if your time is more valuable than theirs. Screw fashionably late – catchphrase made up by stupid inefficient people to get out of being on time.

33. Be strong. Stop living on other people’s terms. Have people treat you the way you want to be treated, in a manner similar to how you treat them. Demand things (level of respect, understanding).

34. Be healthy. Health is something so few people appreciate until it’s gone. Take care of your body and mind because

35. Be good. Just because.

36. Be wrong. You don’t always have to be right. It’s also important to realize that we don’t have all the answers.

37. Be adaptable. Things change fast. Learn to adapt.

38. Be a teacher. Want to be good at something, try teaching it. 

39. Be a student. Never stop learning. You’re a human BEing.

40. Be a kid. Never stop being curious about life. Always look for new ideas.

41. Be a giver. Buy something for yourself, and you’re happy. Buy something from someone else and two people are happy. More importantly, as Jim Rohn, the great Amercian philosopher, said, “Giving is better than receiving because giving starts the receiving process.” 

42. Be a good parent. The single most important thing you can do in raising a child is being there for them.

43. Be a writer. Write things down. Journals, notes, ideas, schedule.

44. Be spontaneous. Just go with the flow sometimes. Not everything has to be planned out.

45. Be a performer. Study magic. The best magicians are masters of performance. The trick itself is often easier than we realize.

And there you have it, 45 secrets that successful entrepreneurs live by. Did I miss any? If so, be sure to drop me a line.