Learn to say no is key for success

Did you say yes to another party without really wanting to go? You know yourself and will go, even if the evening doesn’t bring you anything value? Maybe you don’t even like most of the people there?

We all know that. To say “yes” to something rashly and regret it a short time later. How can we prevent this more effectively and thus lead a more relaxed and happier life?

The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything. – Warren Buffett

The changes with say “no” polite and honest

It’s about taking care of your own needs. If you don’t care about something, for example, this new series, then you won’t waste your time with it. Also money and/or energy. These are three very important values. You won’t waste two hours watching the new episode, won’t search for other information about the actors and won’t spend money on merchandise.

When deciding to that, you will use that time, money and energy for other things you do care about. Inside you is a house full of these three things. You spend it on things you like and thinks you definitely don’t like. The life is average. Not that happy, but also not sad. To get to a happier level, the bad things have to get away and make room for the joyful things.

The “not sorry” method

One way to do this is to use the “Not sorry” method. First: decide what you don’t care about and then in the second step just don’t care about them. Sounds simple, but sometimes it’s not that easy. First, we have to take a look at the bad feeling part of the others. As we learned in the “how to win friends and influence people” book: We need to be able to put ourselves in the other person’s shoes. We just can’t take care of anything right away, we have to do it with method.

If we cancel a party right before it starts and apologizes, it’s not very nice. Then we have to go if we’ve already accepted. We have to don’t care with honesty and politeness. Result: you do not have to feel guilty.

Quick example: you want to watch the newest episode on Monday because if you do not the spoilers online will hit you. Now friends have invited you this Monday evening. But you only have time and energy for one of these two things. You have to decide which of the activities will give you more joy. Now you could apologize in detail or cancel with the words “no sorry have something else planned”. No one will be angry about that. You were honest, polite and don’t have to apologize for it.

You can apply this to everything which fills up your house. Decide which brings joy and bring you a step closer to your goal. Make a list of the tasks you could do, decide what annoys you and then delete it. Nonessential stuff you don’t care about. Stop investing your time, money and energy in those things. Sure, things like go to work and clean up your place is necessary, but a meeting with a guy you don’t even like is not.

If you’re having trouble shortening the list, imagine how things are gonna work out. Many, including me, don’t think through most events and just say yes. With the result of wasting your time. And wasting your energy in beforehand for planning. Money on the event itself then. It would be more efficient to pause for a moment before every promise, to imagine it and if it is nothing for one with a “no thanks, I can’t do it” cancel.

This is a method where you don’t spend time you don’t have, with people you don’t like, doing things you don’t want to do. – Sarah Knight

This post is based on “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck” and Stop Wasting Energy.

Abilities that change life in less than 8h – #1 Meditation

In various books, the 10.000h rule circulates again and again to learn something new. It takes incredibly many hours to learn something really well from 0 on. Josh Kaufmann proves that 20h is enough to reach a good level, as long as you only focus on the absolute basics.
My friend and I considered 5 km jogging as impossible for a long time, as it was always the case at school that the coupe test with its 30 minutes jogging through at a time was the purest torture every year anew. Now we are jogging 10 km for fun without giving it much thought. Started with 10 minutes three times a week.

This post is about a small guideline which I think is very interesting and which I will test for myself in the next weeks.

Skills that really have live changing characteristics and are lived by many high performers:

Learning to learn
Public Speaking
Forming good habits
good listening to others
Mathematical thinking
Coordination and flexibility

In this post, I will deal with meditation.


Many books that speak of life-changing actions, with little time involved, almost always include meditation. Who takes the time to think of nothing for 15 minutes? We are driven by push messages that always keep us on a level of information. Even if they are not really important and keep us from what we are doing.
I had my first experience with meditation during my studies when I let my cousin, who learned hypnosis, hypnotize me for fun. Afterward, we meditated together. Even though I felt fresh and full of energy afterward, I did not pursue this technique any further. That was about 2.5 years ago.

For beginners, a guided meditation is recommended, because it is very difficult or impossible at the beginning to fade out or switch off the thoughts directly. It’s okay to just notice your thoughts at the beginning and perhaps steer them in the desired direction. Meditation, as well as jogging, takes only a few minutes a day and despite its advantages, many of us do not take this time.

The goal of mediation is to order thoughts and become clear. It takes some time to learn this ability. Many do not try and go directly to the next topic – hey a new cat video has been uploaded to Youtube.

In the beginning, it is difficult to concentrate only on breathing. No matter how strange it feels, the emotions must not reach the head, we want to control it. The more we practice, the better we become in it.

Important: create an undisturbed environment. Free from a mobile phone or a person who only needs something in the next few minutes. Meditation doesn’t have to take place sitting down, it can also be lying down, as I preferred in my first session. It was simply more comfortable.

The first 8 hours of this training session:
20 minutes of meditation for the next 24 days.

Since we always have to control ourselves, I will collect my results here and write the days down: Doku

Since I read Tim Ferri’s “4h working week”, I document all my self-tests in order to lie less to myself and to look back on the past days.

Things where meditation can change life:

  • faster falling asleep with better sleep quality
  • stress reduction
  • the clearer the emotions, the body, and the mind become. From all this follows a better decision making.
  • Context change: many of us work in parallel on countless things and meditation should help us to approach these topics in a better-structured way.

What resources can I use?

Guided meditation from UCLA-Health


For my German colleagues:

As always thanks for reading and have a nice day 🙂

Grenzenlos erfolgreich – Dr. Julian Hosp – Tag 1-7


Dieses Buch handelt von Erfolg und wie jeder es selbst definieren kann. Für den einen ist erfolgreich sein ein großes Haus am Strand besitzen, für den anderen bekannt zu sein und der nächste strebt nach innerem Glück und keinerlei materiellen Gütern als Erfolgsmesser.
Dieses Buch handelt von Erfolg und dem Weg ihn selbst zu finden und auch zu gehen. Wissen ist nur dann Macht, wenn es auch eingesetzt wird.
Im Folgenden werde ich meine ersten 7 Tage dieses 30 Tage Programms zusammenfassen, als Dokumentation für mein späteres ich.

Es beginnt damit Erfolg selbst zu definieren. Also setze ich mich eine halbe Minute hin und schreibe alles auf was mir dazu einfällt:
“Glücklich sein mit meinem Leben, von finanziellen Ketten gelöst. Machen wann ich möchte was ich möchte. Menschen helfen mit meinem tun. Zeit haben für die eigenen, wichtigen Dinge.”

Dem Auto Dr. Julian Hosp geht es darum, wie man nicht nur erfolgreich sein kann, sondern sich auch erfolgreich fühlt. Das Mindset, die Menschen um einen herum, die Ziele. All das ist wichtig.

Nach den in den Medien verbreiteten Bildern sind alle Filmstars und Rockstars erfolgreich. Jedoch kennen wir alle die Suizid Meldungen bekannter Schauspieler – so glücklich waren sie somit also nicht. Es geht darum, seinen eigenen erfolgreichen Weg zu finden.

Die Universumstheorien

Er beschreibt in diesem Zusammenhang in wenigen Seiten das Mitleidsuniversum. Dieses ist neben dem Mitgefühlsuniversum aufgebaut und hat keinen Deckel im Vergleich zum Ersten, weil aus diesem keiner entkommen kann. Durch Erfolge werden höhere Ebenen im Universum erreicht. Nun gibt es zwei Wege wie es weiter gehen kann bei einem Rückschlag:
Das Mitleid zieht uns nach unten und hält uns dort. “Du tust mir so Leid, dass XY passiert ist.” Es bestärkt uns darin, keine weiteren Fehler mehr zu begehen und es gar nicht weiter zu versuchen, es hat doch sowieso keinen Sinn, es ist nicht schaffbar.
Das Mitgefühl hingegen baut einen wieder auf und startet das nächste Projekt. “Versuch es doch das nächste Mal mit XY.” Der andere fühlt mit, ohne aber zu leiden und dadurch kann er rationales Feedback geben. Sie unterstützen ihn rational! Mitleid bringt nicht wirklich was, Mitgefühl und dadurch Bestärkung hingegen schon.
Durch das Mitgefühl können immer höhere Ebenen erreicht werden und schlussendlich das Universum verlassen werden, wenn der Deckel nicht wäre. Bei Mitleid wird man nie auch nur in die Nähe des Ausgangs kommen, die Anderen halten einen unten. Daher ist auch kein Deckel notwendig.

Die Vogel Theorie

Stellen wir uns nun 10 Vögel auf einem Dach vor. Einer der Vögel hat jedes einzelne Buch übers Fliegen gelesen, kennt jeden Trick und kann es ohne Probleme erklären. Jedoch ist er selbst noch nie geflogen. Wie viele Vögel sitzen nun noch auf dem Dach?
Alle, weil keiner los fliegt. Sie reden nur drüber wie schön es ist oder wäre. Setzen es aber nicht um. Die Angst ist zu groß. Wissen ist potentielle Macht. Tun ist Macht.

Einige wichtige Denkanstöße

  • Lernen statt kopieren: Verstehe was du liest oder lernst. Zu sagen man habe zehn Bücher über ein Thema gelesen ist noch lange kein Beweis für das Verständnis der Inhalte. Die Feynman technique hat mir im Studium hierbei sehr geholfen.
  • Anfang und Ende definieren: Das große Ende und die ersten Schritte sind wichtig. Was gibt es zu tun, wo fange ich an und wo möchte ich hin. Der Pilot muss das Starten und Landen perfekt beherrschen und die grobe Richtung auf der Landkarte kennen. Wenn ein Windzug von links oder von rechts bläst, wird er trotzdem wissen was zu tun ist und heil ankommen. Er verschwendet nicht seine Zeit damit, die genauen Lenkungen auswendig zu lernen, er handelt intuitiv.
    Anfang und Ende sind wichtig – das dazwischen ergibt sich.
  • Resultat und Potential: der Unterschied zwischen deinem Resultat und deinem Potential ist das tun. Wer nicht beginnt kann das größte Potential der Welt haben und doch nichts liefern.
  • Jeder will erfolgreich sein nur die Arbeit wollen die wenigsten leisten, die es dafür braucht.

Die fünf warum Fragen

Im nächsten Schritt wurde der Leser dazu aufgefordert, seine Definition von Anfang zu nehmen und fünf mal in Folge das Statement mit einem warum weiterzudenken. Wenn man an einer Stelle nicht weiter weiß, muss trotzdem weiter gedacht werden.

Meine Session

Laut Hosp ist die Lösung entweder Glücklich oder Zufrieden sein. Oder beides. Aber nur wenn es wirklich so ist und es nicht nur gesagt wird ohne es wirklich zu fühlen. Viele sagen sie sind zufrieden, sind es aber nicht wirklich. Sie sind nicht wirklich vollkommen zufrieden. Es ist immer noch was drinnen, das raus möchte. Das Ende des warum ist das Symbol für diese Gefühle. Wenn wir dieses Symbol erreichen, dann fühlen wir uns leer, weil es kein Ziel mehr gibt. Darum sollten Ziele hoch gesteckt sein, um sich lange an dem Weg dahin zu erfreuen.

Erfolg ist daher wer wir werden, nicht was wir bekommen.

Wir sind erfolgreich wenn wir glücklich und zufrieden sind, aber immer noch ein bisschen mehr wollen. Einen kleinen Hunger spüren. Das hier noch lernen oder hier noch ein wenig mehr. Kein Stillstand.

Erfolg ist 80% wollen und 20% Strategie. Julian hat hierfür seine eigene kleine Bedürfnispyramide erstellt. Es wird unten begonnen und wenn alle Felder einer Ebene abgearbeitet sind, kann eine Stufe nach oben gegangen werden.


Am Ende jedes Kapitels gibt es eine kleine Hausaufgabe, mit deren Erfüllung die Persönlichkeit wachsen soll. Meine ToDos sind unter dem Link gespeichert – für mich.

1. Was bedeutet absolutes Glück und vollkommene Zufriedenheit in deinem Leben?

2. Warum hast du dir dieses Buch für grenzenlosen Erfolg gekauft?

3. Welche Resultate möchtest du erreichen? Wem möchtest du etwas beweisen?

4. Welche großen Ziele hast du? Welche Wünsche möchtest du dir erfüllen?

5. Welche Schwierigkeiten möchtest du überwinden bzw. welche Ängste loswerden?

6. Wer möchtest du in diesen 30 Tagen werden? Zu welcher Persönlichkeit willst du
aufsteigen? Wie sollen andere Menschen über dich denken?

7. Wer ist ein Mensch, der deiner Meinung nach die Definition von Erfolg zu 100% erfüllt?
Und zwar nicht nur dem Anschein nach außen hin, sondern vollkommen.

Alle ToDos gesammelt

Die vier Motivationen des Menschen

  • Gewohnheit: In annähernd jedem Buch das ich bisher über Gewohnheiten gelesen habe, kommt das McDonalds Beispiel vor. Sie produziert den besten durchschnittlichen Burger der Welt. Das ist deren Geheimnis. Wir wissen genau was uns in diesem Restaurant erwartet, es ist nicht der beste Burger der Welt, jedoch gehen wir auch kein Risiko etwas schlechtes zu essen. Wir mögen die Gewissheit wie beispielsweise ein Gehalt am Ende vom Monat statt schwankendes Einkommen in der Selbstständigkeit.
  • Abwechslung: Ist etwas Konträr zum Ersten. Wir mögen es einen festen Job zu haben, aber keinen, der monoton ist. Lieblingsessen ist es so lange, bis wir es jeden Tag essen müssen. Wir erweitern gerne in kleinem Umfang unsere Komfortzone.
  • Besonders sein: Soziales Grundbedürfnis um sich mit anderen zu vergleichen und besser zu sein. Im Sport, Instagramm Likes, beim Gehalt. Steht im Kontrast zum nächsten Punkt.
  • Liebe & Zuneigung: Wir wollen in der Gruppe akzeptiert werden. Dieses Bedürfnis ist stark verankert, da unsere Vorfahren ohne den Schutz der Gruppe sehr schnell entweder verhungert oder gefressen wurden.

Konträr zueinander stehen 1+2 und 3+4. Zwei von diesen vier stechen in jedem von uns heraus. Meine sind eins und vier. Ich mag geregelte gewohnte Dinge und bin ein gefühlvoller Mensch. Diese vier Punkte bilden die nächsten Schritte über den Grundbedürfnissen wie Essen, Trinken und Schlafen. Sind diese erfolgreich erreicht, können die Steps darüber in Angriff genommen werden, um schlussendlich Teil von etwas größerem sein. Zum Beispiel eine Firma gründen die die Welt verändert. Ein höherer Sinn.


Erfolg ohne sich erfolgreich zu fühlen ist der absolute Misserfolg.
Es kann sich erfolgreich gefühlt werden, wenn die Pyramide der Grundbedürfnisse erfolgreich erklommen ist. Erfolgreich sein wird über das erklimmen der Bedürfnispyramide erreicht.

Improvement Story – The conversation booster

In this post, I’ve collected my best, personally experienced, ice breaker questions for any kind of conversation. I use them for meetings while we wait for all to come in or for business dinners the most. As always, a short summary can be found at the end of this article. Have fun learning!

Let’s get into it:

Imagine you got your dream job and the first meeting is at a hotel for two days with all your new team members. You know you have to work with at least 10 of them each day for now. Now you have two options. Pass the days as “the new one” who don’t know any internal business topics so far, or as the guy who is charismatic and has interest in the teams live beside the job.

Seat picking

The first point on the agenda is lunch. You all had a long journey to come to this hotel from all over the globe. You choose the table with six seats instead of the one with two. Positioning is the first important step because the chances are higher to find conversation partners with whom it is easy to communicate.
You know that more seats mean more communication partners. If the conversation breaks up with one guy, another on the table is taking the word on. At a one on one conversation, it’s hard if the counterpart is not in the mood to talk. So you take the middle seat of the table side with the wall to your back. You know have all your new colleagues in sight and all of the persons who will join you will have the same distance to you. So you can understand any of them the same way, even it is loud at the restaurant.

The next colleagues arrive and two of them are taking place at your table. They sit opposite each other and begin talking. They know each other well and arrived together on the same plane. First, you are listening carefully and wait for a chance to jump into the conversation. The one is talking about business topics, but you can see the other gives quick answers like “Yep” or “Jea you are right” or “I don’t know”. He is not that interested. You wait until one of them is dedicated to his drink and jumps in with:

Did you see any good movie or Netflix series lately you can recommend?

This will steer communication in the private direction. At this moment another colleague sits down, has heard “Netflix” and starts to report from the series “House of money”. The persons who don’t know the series can listen to the story and the others can talk about their favorite characters.

Got any favorite quotes?” is a nice open-ended question, which leads to many opinions and talking. After a while, you expand the conversation further or switch the topic. Simply the best that serves the flow of speech. Actors are famous, so maybe a colleague has met one before?

Have you ever met a famous person?

This is a good one. One colleague met a famous IT CEO while he was walking a marathon. “They are just as normal as we are!”. This leads to films or other stories you can tell or listen to the ones of the others.
In the meantime, the table is fully seated and two conversations can take place. You see the others are more the kind of an introvert, they didn’t say anything the last 20 minutes. That’s your chance to ask them an open question, anyone has something to say about:

Seen anything lately that made you smile?

This has two effects. On the one hand he or she will recall the good feeling thing, and on the other hand, the lunch will turn better on their side. We all know a conversation we all sit quietly next to the others. It’s a bad feeling. So you turned this lunch into a good feeling thing for your counterpart. He won’t forget. Maybe someone was the first time skydiving and is excited to report on the experience he smiled a lot while falling. So he had been pleasantly surprised by anything lately. This question is also a good one.

The lunch ends, the team challenges begin. The goal of this two-day workshop is to know each other better and trust each other more for a better performance at the office. After that, we had dinner, another great way to meet other people. Everyone got time to freshen up and meet for dinner. Same seat picking as a few hours before and round #2 begins 😉

Got any phobias?

You could start talking about a spider in your room. Creepy little animals, kind of scary, but I don’t know why. “What is it that you fear?”, is a great transfer to pass the conversation on to the other person. There is no way to say just “Ok”.
Another way to make your counterpart feel good is a little question about their past:

What was your first job?

It is interesting to learn that a Manager once delivered newspapers when he was a child. Back then the life was easy and our biggest problem was to fill our free time with funny things. If we chose to work then with a reason. We needed something our parents didn’t want to pay for:

What was the first thing you bought with your own money?

In my case, it was a Gameboy Color with Pokémon Red. One of my greatest gaming experience, because I had to work a full year for it. The feeling after I got this was indescribable. Maybe some of your colleagues had similar experiences.
As a kid, our environment shapes us the most. So the next question can be a good boost:

As you grow up who had the most influence on you and why?

Maybe some action hero or a book author like Joanne K. Rowling, who wrote Harry Potter. Most of us have a person we like what he did. If books switch into the center of the conversation, this question maybe this question comes all on its own:

What book are you reading right now?

Books are great gates into other worlds. You now have the chance to find out which worlds your colleagues like and which recommendations you can exchange with each other. Maybe someone started reading a book because his life changed in certain areas. For instance got kids, want to manage their money or get lost in a story. Perhaps the opportunity for an exchange of books arises, so the second contact is guaranteed in any case.
After so much to eat, a little sport is not wrong. So you could ask all on your table if there is someone who wants to go for a walk with you.

Who wants to take an evening walk?

Ask for a walk. Maybe some of them took a run lastly, as I did the Tough Mudder. You do sport and talk. Last time I ran with a colleague who had a star wars t-shirt to run on. Star Wars is one of my favorite topics since I’m a kid.


He reported back that he liked the conversation because I had hit exactly his three favorite topics. It was a very interesting conversation. I learned a lot about him, his interests and how powerful specific questions could be…

Who do we prefer to have a conversation with? With a person who we feel to be great ourselves, or with someone who gives us the feeling. The last probably… Now you can be that person who gives that feeling to the people!

TOUGH MUDDER 2018 – From couch potato to a 16 km (10 miles) obstacle course in just two month

We all find challenges in our life, but take less of them, because of fear. My friend Marcel convinced me to begin jogging. I hated it in school. I did martial arts for over 10 years, so I’m not that bad in sports. But jogging was just too exhausting, too slow. Riding a bike is better because it’s faster. More efficient.
As we learn in software development, it is good to divide your goals into small parts in order to experience and liven up small successes on the way to the goal. Now my goal was the “Tough Mudder”, an obstacle course here in Germany. In order to survive this, I had to be able to jog the whole distance at home. The obstacles will cost enough power. (Key lessons at the end of this post)

Since I couldn’t imagine running the whole track, I signed up with Marcel for half the mudder. A 7,5 kilometer (km) long track. The goal was set. What’s gonna happen except I do not make it? (Later on, we did the full 16 km, because of challenge 😀 )


“To become really good at what you do, you have to be comfortable failing at it.”

The training plan

Source: https://appadvice.com/app/c25k-5k-trainer/485971733

My goal was creating a jogging routine within two months. Marcel himself started jogging with the C25K Run plan. It’s a plan were you walk till you reach the 5 kilometers or 3,1 miles in about 30 minutes. He did it months ago, then why shouldn’t I make it? I used the same app as he did. (see picture)

The Mudder Tickets were bought, there was no way back. We scheduled three meetings each week at the same time after work for the next two month and started right away.


The first month – wow that’s easy

The first week was no big deal. A brisk five-minute warmup walk. Then 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes. That’s not that hard? I can do that?
That’s the point of this concept. You start with little baby steps to create a routine. The second week was the same but 90 minutes of jogging and two minutes of walking.

In these usually 30 minutes you can exchange super about the current projects and ideas. Without a partner, both of us would hardly have been able to get up and running on such a regular basis.

Week one to four


The second month – Uff! that’s a bit tricky now

The jump in week four was hard. You see the plan expands the jogging units piece by piece while adapting the running units. You jog longer, you walk the same you lazy ass. We want to make progress!
Session after session we became more and more familiar. After work, we waited in jogging shoes for each other to finally run this half hour. I have to say I rediscovered the beauty of nature for myself. Our routes run mainly through woods and meadows. Exhausted but full of energy arriving at home.

Week five to seven

Some days my family sat in the living room, I went running, came back and everyone sat in the same place and talked. What I’m trying to say: They could have talked while jogging. They could have combined both and felt even better after jogging.


The last week – Wow, we walked 8 kilometers (5 miles) by mistake?!

The last week was funny. We have tested a 5-kilometer track which is often used for small marathons here in the area. The route runs through a forest with altitude meters and a beautiful environment. At some point, the app must have reported that we had already run the desired route, but we were too far off course. 3 kilometers too far. We then decided to walk the now 8 kilometers, or at least as far as we can jog without walking. Finally, we reached the goal. Exhausted but happy.

The table you see below is purely for the sake of completeness. We have run a lot more this week, simply because of this mistake.

week eight


Tough Mudder challenge – Fun doing things you did as a kid

Obstacle course passed (see video below for proof). It’s amazing what the body can do in two months with a little regular training. I hated jogging, now it’s an integral part of my week 🙂


Key Lessons

  • Achieve things you didn’t think possible just by trying them.
  • Small steps can be too easy in the beginning, but they form a habit which makes the difficult tasks last longer.
  • A partner with the same goal is incredibly valuable. We often said to ourselves that we wouldn’t have walked today if the other hadn’t waited for the other.
  • Working towards one goal (passing the mudder) makes you think of progress as a journey needed to get there. How we need the plane to get to a distant continent.

– Update – Two days after mudder

Everything hurts. My arms, my legs, anything. It’s a sign we made progress. We did the Tough Mudder on Saturday, now it’s Monday. The routine goes on. Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Marcel and I complaining about our pain. Some would say “Mimimi”.
The first kilometer behind us, we know again why we do it. The landscape is beautiful and today’s 6 km are over very fast. I have added a picture for all of you who read this to start as a motivation yourself.

Just do it! 🙂