One of the best things about laptops is their portability. They have become powerful enough that it is no longer necessary for most of us to need a separate desktop. However one of the biggest limitations, especially for anyone doing graphics, design, photography or application multitasking on their computer is the small screen size.
Most laptops allow you to connect one external monitor to the vga (blue input) or dvi (white input) in the back of the computer. This allows you to extend your laptop screen to two screens, which causes both the built-in monitor of the laptop and external monitor to act like one giant screen. Once you go from one monitor to an extended desktop of multiple monitors… it is impossible to go back to one. Your productivity will increase dramatically.
Even with most desktops, one extra monitor is the limit even if you have multiple monitor inputs (vga/dvi/hdmi) because the video graphics card in your computer can’t handle more. The video graphic cards that allow multiple monitors (3-4) are much more expensive as well.
One of my business partners went this route and while it works great – he had to spend thousands of extra dollars for the setup. (Pictured above) After purchasing a new laptop recently, I stumbled upon a workaround to not only add multiple monitors to my laptop… it is allows you to add up to 6 external monitors to your laptop or even desktop. Since I already had the monitors, my total cost was only $60 to have a 3 screen computer setup (top article photo).
To add multiple monitors to your laptop or desktop:
Most achievers, myself included, fall into the trap of trying to do everything themselves. My logic has always been I can do it better than anyone else and by the time I explain how to do it, I could have been done it already. The problem with this thinking is that it stagnates growth.
While I am a firm believer that every business owner must take a personal role in the marketing, sales and systematization of their business, they should not be spending time doing the grunt work. Not only does your to-do list pile up to unreasonable levels, it stifles creativity and takes your focus away from more important parts of your business and personal life.
Another reason people do not want to delegate is because of the costs of hiring another person or service to take over some of their tasks. The problem with this thinking is that you have to evaluate how much your time is worth and what is the opportunity cost of doing it yourself.
The American Dream is the goal of being able to provide a better life for our children and the philosophy that anyone can achieve success if they work hard enough. However, the extremely high rate of business failures shows us that hard work and desire are not enough. As an entrepreneur you must be able to innovate and lead your company to success. Based on my life experiences of running multiple companies (I’m currently running ten business ventures simultaneously) and consulting hundreds more worldwide, I feel the following fifteen traits are essential to becoming a successful entrepreneur.
Confidence is the corner stone of being an entrepreneur. You must absolutely belief in yourself, your abilities, your company, your products and services. There should be no doubts whatsoever about what you are doing, the benefits you provide, or the price you are charging. Side note: Many entrepreneurs undervalue themselves and charge too little. This is a deadly mistake.
Being courageous means doing something despite being fearful. Fear paralyzes people and companies. You must be proactive in overcoming fears to take action. Whether it is picking up the phone to call a prospect, negotiating with a vendor, speaking in public or having to let go of an employee who is not performing. The best way to get past your fears is to take them head on and without thinking.
“A coward dies a thousand deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once.”
You have to be willing to take massive and consistent action on a daily basis to achieve your goals. Having a strong work ethic is an absolute must and your success is directionally proportional to the level of action you take.
The majority of businesses fail because the entrepreneur gives up. There will always be very difficult challenges that come up. You have to realize that even if the worst happens it is not the end of the world and you must have the attitude of never giving up. This was a trait I developed through my martial arts training as a child. It is one of the most powerful attributes a person can develop.
The only way I will absolutely give up on a task I truly want is if I am dead.
I am a firm believer that even as adults we must cultivate our creative sides. The arts and music have been proven to stimulate our brains and increase academic performance in children. Learning to play an instrument leads to a better understanding of math concepts, while drawing and other visual arts help with language development, coordination and spatial abilities.
I’ve found them to help my creativity as well. Especially since I do so much in work in web development, business systematization and marketing, I want to make sure I always do something creative on at least a weekly basis. Drawing, photography and playing the guitar are my top three creative outlets. I’m actually not that great at any of them (yet) – but I find them fun and I still get the benefits mentioned above.
My 2011 – 52 Week Drawing Challenge
This year I am committing to learning how to draw manga and anime with a 52 week drawing challenge. I am going to draw at least one drawing a week for a total of at least 52 by the end of year.
As I mentioned in How to Conquer the World without Feeling Stressed or Overwhelmed the key to being fulfilled and stress free is to make sure you are spending time on all the major areas in your life. Typically, they consist of 6 main areas for most people:
- Physical and Health
- Emotional Mastery
- Relationships (Intimate, Family, Friends/social)
However, if you have lost that balance, how do you quickly regain it? When we are reactive we are rushing to put out the fires that have developed in our lives. Once we have that area handled we realize during that process another area has been suffering, so we rush to fix that area which creates a never ending cycle. In a worst case scenario a sense of learned helplessness can develop.
The Wheel of Life
A great metaphor I first heard from Anthony Robbins is the concept of the Wheel of Life. Read More