30 Ways To Live A Life Of Excellence

Excellent Life

30 Ways To Live A Life Of Excellence was written by Celestine.

I’ve always been passionate about living a life of excellence.  Setting goals, overcoming challenges, getting results, celebrating the victories – these make living so rich and worthwhile.

When I was in college I was on the Dean’s List – an honorary roll awarded only to top students – in every academic year I was there.  When I graduated I was selected from over 1,000 applicants to enter a Fortune 100 company – one of the top 100 companies in the world recognized by Fortune.  Then when I quit to pursue my passion a year and a half ago, I started The Personal Excellence Blog to share my best advice to achieve excellence in life.

In the last year and a half I also founded my training school where I coach and train others to achieve excellence.  Life has never been more rewarding.  That being said, I have determined that excellence itself is a way of life, not a destination.  While I’ve made some accomplishments, I’m nowhere near where I envision myself to be in the future.  There’s always room for personal growth.  Our potential is limitless, and it’s up to us to tap into it.

Here are my top 30 ways to live a life of excellence:

  1. Discover your purpose. – Our physical life started when we were born.  Our real life starts when we discover our purpose.  What is your purpose?  What is your mission statement for your life?  Mine is, “To touch others’ lives, help them achieve their highest potential and live their best lives.”  This one statement gives me clarity and focus on what to do, from my daily plans to my long-term goals.
  2. Follow your passion. – To do what you love is truly the only way to live.  Don’t just pursue as a hobby; turn it into your career.  I didn’t use to be a personal development blogger or a coach.  I was a marketing major and I was working in brand management as a career.  However, it wasn’t my passion.  So a year and a half ago, I quit my regular job to pursue my real passion.  Despite having no experience in the personal development industry, I slowly carved my niche in this area and established myself and my expertise.  Today I’m pursuing my passion as a career, and loving it.
  3. Set your goals. If you can have whatever you want, what would you like?  What are your biggest goals and dreams?  Set them.  The life I’m living today is a result of goals I set in the past.  If you don’t set any goals, it’s safe to say that you’ll be running in place for the foreseeable future.  Is that what you want?
  4. Create a life handbook. A life handbook is a concept I created where you have a book to write your life purpose, goals, dreams, plans, values, mottos, and other things that are important to you as you pursue your best life.  I started my life handbook in 2007 and it has been my #1 tool to living my life to the fullest.  Learn more about my life handbook and how to create yours.
  5. Have the right mindset. The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your thoughts.  If you think life sucks, life will indeed suck.  On the other hand, if you are set to live your best life, the paths will open up in front of you.  Maybe it’s all the ‘good triumphing over evil’ RPGs I’ve played since young, but I firmly believe that where there’s a will, there’s a way.  No one can stop you if you have the right mindset.
  6. Create your bucket list. A bucket list is a list of things to do before you die.  All of us are going to die one day.  What are all the things you want to do/see/say/experience before you die?  It can be seeing the world, living your dreams, going skydiving, falling in love, among countless others.  I created my bucket list last year with over 100 things, and every day I accomplish what’s on it and add new things I want to do.  Here’s a list of 101 Things To Do Before You Die for ideas on what to put in your bucket list.
  7. Get mentors. You have dreams and big visions, and there are people who have likely been there and done that.  Get them to mentor you.  It’ll definitely cut down the learning curve and ease your journey.  With a mentor, you can unlock your potential and achieve so much more.
  8. Stop worrying so much. The majority of our fears exist only in our head.  Get rid of them and spend the energy on something productive.
  9. Get closer with your parents. Many of us only have functional relationships with our family.  Some of us might even have estranged family relationships.  I know I used to have that, then I realized it was foolish.  Our parents went through a lot of hardship by bringing us up, and no one’s ever going to share a connection to us the way they do.  Today I’m much closer to my parents than I was in the past, and I’m grateful for that.
  10. Let go of negative friendships. If you have friends who discourage you and pull you down, it’s time to get rid of them.  Getting rid might be too harsh for some, so distancing is a good alternative.  I had several negative friends in the past, then I just reduced contact.  Instead of wasting time and energy resisting them, I was then able to focus my energy on people and things that make me happy.
  11. Surround yourself with positive people. Do you know you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with?  Your attitudes, beliefs, accomplishments and success are a function of the people you spend time around.  Think about the people who inspire you and spend more time with them.  You’ll be amazed at the effects they’ll have on you.
  12. Release your limits. They say the sky is the limit.  I disagree.  We are our own limits.  It’s then about releasing our limits so we can live our best lives.  What are you limiting yourself from doing?  Stop holding yourself back.  Go out and get what you want.
  13. Believe in yourself. The majority of the times I’ve been able to achieve something is because I started out believing I could do it, rather than acquiring that belief after I achieved it.  If I didn’t think I could do it, I probably would never have succeeded.  My past experiences have taught me that all you need to have in order to succeed is to have a sense of self-belief – a sense that you can control your own future.  That’s all.
  14. Wake up early. I used to wake up late every day, like 9-10am.  I never thought much about waking up early until a couple of years ago.  After I switched to waking early at 5am, my days have been incredible.  I feel more productive, I get more done, I’m more eager to work to keep the momentum going.  It’s something you have to try yourself to know the difference.
  15. Eat a healthy diet. A healthy diet just-starts a life of excellence.  What’s in your daily diet?  Junk?  Fast food?  Fried food?  Or healthy, nutritious food?  Fruits?  Vegetables?  I’ve been a vegan since 2008 and have been loving it.  While I tried it out as just a 30-day trial, I immediately saw the benefits of being a vegan and stayed the course ever since.  Also read: 9 Timeless Nutrition Tips for Any Age
  16. Exercise regularly. Aside from a regular gym routine, try other sports to spice it up your workouts.  Frisbee, badminton and swimming are some of my favorite sports.  These make exercising a lot more fun.
  17. Plan your days. Do you plan your days?  Did you wake up today knowing what you are supposed to do today?  If not, maybe it’s time you do.  Planning doesn’t have to be long and tedious, it can just be a 30 second process.  Every night, think about a few small things that you want to accomplish tomorrow and write them down.  When you wake up the next morning, review this list before you do anything else.
  18. Nurture those whom you love. The magical feeling of love.  The fluttering of your heart.  The internal smile you get when you think of those who you care for most.  It’s impossible to live a life of excellence without sharing quality time with those whom you love.
  19. Try something new. Routines stagnate us.  New experiences help us grow and they make life interesting.  Make an effort to try something new every week.  I get very invigorated whenever I’m doing something new.  It can be a whole new activity or just a small experience, such as talking to a stranger.
  20. Stop watching TV. Why stop watching TV?  The bulk of content on TV is consciousness lowering.  TV has been proven by research to be linked with lower life satisfaction.  TV ads motivate you spend more money frivolously.  TV wastes lots and lots of time.  I could go on forever.  I quit regular TV watching almost 5 years ago and never looked back.  I recently wrote an article on my blog called 10 Reasons To Stop Watching TV and found out a good number of my readers dropped TV in their lives as well.  Try it out for 21-days and see how you feel.  Be sure to read: Top 10 Reasons You Should Stop Watching TV  and 40 Positive Effects of a TV Free Week.
  21. Stop obsessing over the news. A lot of news today resonates with fear, guilt, shame and hate.  Depending on your news source, many are largely sensationalized and biased as well.  You don’t need to watch the news every day for an hour to know that there are car accidents, murders and wars out there.  Focus your energy on how you can address those problems instead.
  22. Don’t be trapped by dogma. Don’t feel compelled to follow others all the time.  Pave your own path.  Follow your heart.  Don’t fall into the trap of operating on everyone’s whim.  Listening is okay, but doing what everyone wants is simply unhealthy.  Execute the good feedback and follow your vision.
  23. Be compassionate. Show love and kindness to all the people around you.  Respect everyone.  They may not react in a kind way immediately, but they will notice and appreciate your kindness. To love is to be human.
  24. Smile more. It takes more muscles to frown than to smile.  So let’s smile more often.  :)
  25. Criticize less, appreciate more. Do you like overly critical people?  I’m sure you don’t.  They are a dread to be around.  So let’s be less critical.  Don’t stare so hard at what’s missing.  Learn to see and appreciate what’s there instead.
  26. Keep a journal to self-reflect. I had a paper journal for several years, but after I started The Personal Excellence Blog I use the blog as my journal.  By having a place to freely let out our thoughts and ponder over them, we get a lot more clarity about ourselves.  If you are not sure where to start with, try 50 Questions That Will Free Your Mind, 20 Questions You Should Ask Yourself Every Sunday and check out the new site Thought Questions.
  27. Forgive those who hurt you. To forgive is to let go of a prisoner and to realize that the prisoner all along was you.  Don’t hold on to past hatred.  Let it go.  You’ll find new, wonderful things entering your life once you do.
  28. Enrich your mind great books. Books contain concentrated volumes of wisdom.  It’s not surprising then that most knowledgeable people are also very well-read.  Check out 40 Modern Nonfiction Books Everyone Should Read and 30 Books Everyone Should Read Before Their 30th Birthday.
  29. Coach someone. – There’s no better way to learn than to teach others.  Is there someone who can benefit from your help?  Offer to coach them for free.  It’ll be an enlightening experience for both of you.
  30. Meet new people. Most humans have a habit of stagnating in a small circle of friends.  But it doesn’t help us grow.  Get out there and meet new people.  You’ll be surprised at the lessons they will teach you and the new opportunities they will inject into your life.

In case you can’t get enough, here are some related posts:

Act now.  We only live once.  Let’s live our lives in excellence.

Celestine Chua writes at The Personal Excellence Blog, where she shares her best advice on how to achieve personal excellence and live your best life.  Get her RSS feed directly and add her on Twitter @celestinechua.  If you like this article, you will likely enjoy one of her top articles: 101 Things To Do Before You Die.

Photo by: Glacier Tim

Top 40 Useful Sites To Learn New Skills

Learn New Skills

The web is a powerful resource that can easily help you learn new skills.  You just have to know where to look.  Sure, you can use Google, Yahoo, or Bing to search for sites where you can learn new skills, but I figured I’d save you some time.

Here are the top 40 sites I have personally used over the last few years when I want to learn something new.

  1. Hack a Day – Hack a Day serves up fresh hacks (short tutorials) every day from around the web and one in-depth ‘How-To hack’ guide each week.
  2. eHow – eHow is an online community dedicated to providing visitors the ability to research, share, and discuss solutions and tips for completing day-to-day tasks and projects.
  3. Wired How-To Wiki – Collaborate with Wired editors and help them build their extensive library of projects, hacks, tricks and tips.  Browse through hundreds how-to articles and then add to them, or start a new one.
  4. MAKE Magazine – Brings the do-it-yourself (DIY) mindset to all of the technology in your life.  MAKE is loaded with cool DIY projects that help you make the most of the technology you already own.
  5. 50 Things Everyone Should Know How To Do – While not totally comprehensive, here is a list of 50 things everyone should know how to do.  It’s a great starting point to learn new skills.
  6. wikiHow – A user based collaboration to build and share the world’s largest, highest quality how-to manual.
  7. Lifehacker – An award-winning daily blog that features tips, shortcuts, and downloads that help you get things done smarter and more efficiently.
  8. 100+ Google Tricks That Will Save You Time – Today, knowing how to use Google effectively is a vital skill.  This list links out to enough Google related resources to make you an elite Google hacker.
  9. Instructables – Similar to MAKE, Instructables is a web-based documentation platform where passionate people share what they do and how they do it, and learn from and collaborate with others as the tackle new projects and learn new skills.
  10. Merriam-Webster Online – In this digital age, your ability to communicate with written English is paramount skill.  And M-W.com is the perfect resource to improve your English now.
  11. Lumosity – Learn to improve your memory by playing a series of fun and educational brain training games.
  12. 100 Skills Every Man Should Know – Another compilation article with instructions to help you learn new skills.  This one says it’s geared for men, but I think most of these skills are applicable to women as well.
  13. 5min Life Videopedia – Lot’s of great tutorials and DIY videos.
  14. HowStuffWorks – Knowledge is power.  While this site isn’t exactly geared to help you learn new skills, it contains so much useful information that you’re bound to learn a skill or two while you browse.
  15. StumbleUpon – A collective set of recommendations from thousands of hours of searching by web users who share your interests.  It’s basically a recommendation engine.  Users add to this engine by providing their personal recommendations on what sites are worth your time.  If you select topics and tags of interest like ‘Self-Improvement‘ and ‘DIY,’ you’ll be learning new skills in no time.
  16. Work.com – An extensive directory of how-to guides for beginning entrepreneurs.
  17. Howcast – Hosts professional how-to videos as well as how-to wiki tutorials.  Howcast combines user ideas with the expertise of professional studio video to deliver what is nothing short of amazing, informative content.
  18. VideoJug – The video content on this site covers a variety of topics including informative ‘How To’ and ‘Ask The Expert’ films that guide you step-by-step through everything and anything in life.
  19. MakeUseOf – A booming daily blog that features cool websites, computer tips, and downloads that make you more productive.  Lot’s of insightful tips and tricks to learn.
  20. WonderHowTo – This site is focused on one clear organizing principle: aggregating and linking to truly great, free how-to videos from which you can learn new skills.
  21. SuTree – Another useful aggregator of how-to videos from all around the web.
  22. Zen Habits – The ultimate productivity and self-improvement blog.  Zen Habits is about finding simplicity in the daily chaos of our lives.  It’s about clearing the clutter so we can focus on what’s important, create something amazing, and find happiness.  Lot’s of learning material here.
  23. Academic Earth – Online degrees and video courses from leading universities.
  24. About.com Videos – Another solid collection of how-to video tutorials.
  25. PCWorld How-To – Lot’s of useful tutorials and guides related to fixing and modifying computers and other electronic gadgets.
  26. Spreeder – This site is focused on teaching you one new skill:  speed reading.  And it does a great job of doing so.
  27. Woopid – Watch free technology training videos.  Get help and answer your computer and gadget questions with thousands of video tutorials for PCs, Macs, and various software applications.
  28. DIY Network – A go-to destination for rip-up, knock-out home improvement projects.  The site offers expert answers the most sought-after questions regarding creative projects for DIY enthusiasts.
  29. Scitable – A free science library and personal learning tool that currently concentrates on genetics, the study of evolution, variation, and the rich complexity of living organisms.  The site also expects to expand into other topics of learning and education.
  30. All Recipes – A complete guide to recipes and cooking tips.  If you’d like to learn to be a better cook, this site is for you.
  31. 43 Folders – This site is more about inspiring you to follow-through with your goals than it is about learning new skills.  But I think following-through with your goals is a skill.  Most people never quite get there.
  32. Dumb Little Man – Another awesome productivity and self-improvement blog hosting lots of useful information.
  33. iTunes U – Hundreds of universities — including Stanford, Yale and MIT — distribute lectures, slide shows, PDFs, films, exhibit tours and audio books through iTunes U.  The Science section alone contains content on topics including agriculture, astronomy, biology, chemistry, physics, ecology and geography.
  34. American Sign Language Browser – Teach yourself sign language online.
  35. BBC Languages – Teach yourself a new spoken language online.
  36. Delicious Popular DIY – Lots of popular DIY articles bookmarked by users from all over the web.
  37. Khan Academy – Over 1200 videos lessons covering everything from basic arithmetic and algebra to differential equations, physics, chemistry, biology and finance.  Lot’s of educational material to help you learn new skills.
  38. The Happiness Project – Learn the skills necessary to create happiness in your life.
  39. How To Do Things – Another solid collection of how-to tutorials.
  40. ShowMeDo – A peer-produced video-tutorials and screencasts site for free and open-source software.  The large majority are free to watch and download.

Also, check out these books for more ideas on pertinent life skills:

Photo by: vramak

Always A One Of A Kind

One Of A Kind

The Real Thing

Last night I saw Donny at a house party near the beach.  He was wearing an Armani sports jacket and loafers while the rest of us wore shorts and sandals.  I thought his choice of apparel was interesting, because back when we lived together he didn’t even own a sports jacket or loafers.

He also brought two bottles of Cristal (really expensive champagne) to the party.  It was the first time I’d ever seen Cristal – outside of hip-hop music videos.  Actually, the closest I’d come to seeing it was on my first date with Angel several years ago.  After a nice dinner, I ran to the liquor store, bought a bottle of Cristalino (a cheap sparkling wine), cut the ‘ino’ off the label, and tried to make her laugh.

“Inventive,” she said, “Just not too smooth.”

But this was the real thing.  And several party goers circled around Donny hoping to grab a glass before it was gone. “Just like old times, man,” Sam said to me. “Donny is still the life of the party!”

Still So Crazy

After the two bottles were gone, and people were again drinking Keystone Light (a cheap beer), I stood on the patio with Donny, Sam, and Chad – my old college buddies.

“Do you remember that time when Donny got drunk and broke every lamp in our dorm?” Sam asked.  “We spent three whole nights studying and eating by candlelight until he bought us those ugly Victorian lamps he found at a garage sale.”

Sam, Chad and I laughed at the recollection.  Back then, it was normal for Donny to spontaneously smash little things (like beer cans and plastic cups) when he was drunk.  But that night he went on a rampage.  And we owned a set of gaudy Victorian lamps for the next two years to prove it.

Donny shook his head disapprovingly.  “Come on guys, not in front of my girlfriend,” he said, directing us with his eyes to the girl on his arm.  “I’ve moved on.  Respect me for that.”

I looked at the girl gripping Donny’s arm.  Though she’d been with him all night, I hadn’t really noticed her, and she hadn’t said a word.  I looked at Donny and smiled, but I didn’t know what to say.  Sam and Chad were smiling too, but they didn’t know what to say either.  Luckily, Donny broke the awkward silence.  “Why don’t I get another bottle of Cristal out of the car,” he said. “Ya know… for old times sake.”

“Yeah man, yeah!” Sam said. “You’re still so crazy!”

Nostalgia and Negation

When I got home last night I stayed up and thought about what happens to us as time passes.  We change.  And as we change, we grow and move toward new people and experiences, and we make decisions and judgments about the people and experiences that we move away from.

We typically either choose to engage and move closer (nostalgia), or we choose to disengage and move farther away (negation).  Nostalgia isn’t good because we’re holding onto what’s no longer there.  But negation isn’t good either because we’re pretending that what was once there never existed.

When we’re too close to something (nostalgia), we can’t see clearly.  Sometimes we even see things that aren’t there at all.  For example, Sam wanted to know Donny as he remembered him – a crazy party animal.  But the bottles of Cristal didn’t make Donny crazy, they made him high-priced.  Donny had long since stopped being the party animal we all knew in college.

When we’re too far away from something (negation), we can’t see it at all.  And we begin to lose a part of ourselves that can be a source of great happiness, understanding and direction.  For example, Donny had lots of good friends and experiences from his college years, and his girlfriend would have loved to share in them with him.  I know this because she told me before I left the party last night.


Clarity comes, I think, in being able to recognize the perils of both nostalgia and negation.  It’s simply about appreciating the past without trying to relive it, learning from the past without running away from it, and seeing people and experiences as they are in this moment – sometimes happy, sometimes sad, never perfect, always a one of a kind.

Photo by: Gonzalo Ar

How To Achieve Your Goals

Achieve Your Goals

‘How To Achieve Your Goals’ was written by Vincent, author of Health Money Success.

So you have some goals, but you just can’t seem to achieve them.  You’re frustrated, right?  Well, why is it so hard?  Do only a few lucky people get to achieve their goals?  No…

It’s all about creating a logical plan and executing it.

There are three big reasons why people fail to achieve their goals:

  1. They never set achievable goals to begin with.
  2. They have no plan.
  3. They never take any sort of logical action.

Do you think Steve Jobs and Bill gates were just lucky, or did they have a plan?  You better believe they had a plan – a long, long-term vision.  And then they worked hard and took a series of logical, actionable steps to achieve them.  They didn’t just ‘think it.’  They ‘did it.’

You don’t try to build a wall. You don’t set out and say, “I’m going to build the biggest, baddest, greatest wall that has ever been built.” You say, “I’m going to lay this brick as perfectly as a brick can be laid.”
You do this every single day, and soon you have a wall.
-Will Smith

How To Achieve Your Goals

Over the years I have achieved many of my personal goals.  And in all cases this is the methodology I used.  It’s tried and true, and I assure you, it can help you achieve your goals as well.  There are four basic steps:

  • Set achievable goals.
  • Strategize and plan.
  • Take action.
  • Review your progress regularly.

Let’s go through them one at a time.

Set Achievable Goals

When you are climbing the ladder, ensure that
you are leaning against the right wall.

You can climb the ladder as fast as you want, but it’s going to be a giant waste of your time if you get to the top and realize you’re leaning against the wrong wall.  You will need to get this step right to ensure that you are not wasting your efforts on goals that you do not truly want to achieve.  We as humans have a tendency to try to bite off more than we can chew, and this usually causes us to feel frustrated and annoyed.

Because we only have a finite amount of time, it’s foolish to attempt to conquer the world in a day.  Yeah, you could set goals to be the best guitar player, basketball player, football player, lose weight, be financially savvy, earn $10,000 and join the public speaking club all at the same time.  But does that sound logical or achievable?  Not to me it doesn’t.  How can you excel at anything when you are juggling everything?

So the first key is to figure out a few (1 to 3) things that you truly want.  And make sure you truly understand why you want these things.  Otherwise you’ll just lose interest.

Strategize and Plan

Here are the basic strategies you will need to employ to keep your motivation burning and your progress on track:

A)  Paste up your goals where you can see them every day. – Without reminders, you will likely forget about your goals and become easily distracted by other stimuli.  So print them out 10, 20 or 30 times and paste them up in the most prominent, visible areas around your house, office, etc.

B)  Create a visualization board. – For most of us, our mind sees the world in images and we remember images more clearly compared to text and numbers.  A visualization board is basically a large bulletin board filled with clear images of what you want to achieve.  This added visual stimulation can help invoke powerful emotions that will constantly drive your motivation.

If you want to lose weight and get back down a few pants sizes, put an old photo of yourself up on the board.  If you want your blog to start making a thousand dollars a month, find a few success stories online of people that have achieved that goal and stick it up on the board.  You get the idea.  Position the board right next to your work area so you can see it while you work toward your goals.

C)  Form a small mastermind group. – A mastermind group is your support group.  And believe me, this group is a vital entity to your success.  The group can consist of any amount of people (at least 2), but the important thing is that everyone in the group must share similar goals.  It doesn’t help much when you are trying to lose 30 lbs and other members in the group have goals of setting up their own company.

A mastermind group helps to hold all its members accountable.  This will help you maintain consistency in taking action even when laziness gets the best of you.  Be sure to meet with your mastermind group at least once a week.

D)  Create a daily action plan with actionable tasks. – Bullet points A, B and C help you to sustain the desire and motivation to achieve your goals.  This will ensure that you will not give up halfway though and fall backwards on your rear end.  But you also need a real, actionable plan that you can follow every day until you actually do achieve your goals.

Every morning, brainstorm for tasks that will help to bring you closer to your goals and write them down.  Try to create three small actionable tasks each morning and complete them before you go to sleep.  Make them a priority and fit them into your schedule.  Whether you complete them or not makes a big difference in whether or not you will succeed.

If you find it hard to generate the small daily tasks or an actionable plan that will bring you closer to your goals, seek out a mentor, search online, or purchase a book on goal setting.

Here are three books I highly recommend:

Breaking down your goals will help you avoid the feeling of being overwhelmed.  When you are creating your action plan, keep the short-term tasks in mind instead of obsessing over the long-term end result.  Obsessing over long-term results just creates stress.  It is far easier to think on a short-term task-related basis. And as long as you complete your tasks, the results will take care of themselves.  For instance, if you want to write a book, don’t obsess about completing the book (long-term results oriented), just focus on writing a page or two a day (short-term task-related) and soon you will have your book completed.

E)  Set a deadline. – You will also need to set a deadline for your goal.  A long-term goal without a deadline will not instill any sense of urgency in you.  And defining a deadline also gives you something to look forward to.

Take Action

This step doesn’t need a long explanation.  Just take your daily action plan that we created above and DO IT!  More than anything, successfully achieving any goal hinges on the simple act of making a decision to absorb yourself fully in the process of getting things done – actually taking action.

Review Your Progress Regularly

An airplane goes slightly off its set course 70 to 80 percent of the time during an average flight, but the pilots always manage to land it in the exact location they intended.  How?  It’s quite simple.  Every time they go off course, they make a slight adjustment to correct it.

Reviewing your goals regularly will help you to check your progress to determine if any adjustments are required. In addition, monitoring your progress will also likely motivate you to try even harder.  Whenever we see positive results, we have the tendency to take more action so we can see more positive results.

Parting Words

This article was inspired by one of the comments I recently received over on my blog.  It seems that people are often frustrated that they can’t stick to their goals and achieve the results they want in life.  I hope this article helps.  I would love to hear some feedback from you in the comments section below.  I’ll be sure to follow-up.  Cheers.

Author’s Bio: Vincent writes about personal development over at Health Money Success.  His aim is to help people awaken the sleeping genius within them so they can achieve their desired success in life.  He has also created a free ebook called Unleash Your Maximum Potential.

Photo by: James Jordan

10 Handy Travel Gadgets for Geeky Business Travelers

Road Warrior Tools for Business Travel

I’ve been racking up quite a few frequent flyer miles on business travel lately.  So today I figured I’d share some of the essential tools and gadgets from my road warrior toolbox.  These are the tools and gadgets I’ve come to absolutely rely on – the ones that make me more productive when I’m sky-riding at 35,000 feet, waiting in an airport lounge, or driving a rental car somewhere between here and there.  And since I’m a bit of a geek, the list certainly has a geeky twist to it.

  1. Travelpro Crew 7 Expandable Rollaboard Suitcase – Hey, if it was good enough for George Clooney in the movie ‘Up in the Air,’ it’s good enough for me.  But in all seriousness, I have gone through my fair share of luggage and this is the perfect suitcase for the hardcore road warrior.  It’s big enough to cram a week’s worth of clothing into and small enough to use as a carry-on.
  2. Cradlepoint CTR-350 Cellular Travel Router – The CTR-350 is a great mobile Broadband/Wi-Fi router.  It’s designed to use a mobile broadband data device (I’m using Sprint’s 595U) and provide access to it via Wi-Fi.  It works right out of the box in the default configuration, though you probably want to enable wireless security after testing it out, or else everyone will have access to it.
  3. Sprint Aircard 595U – Okay, so I figured I couldn’t make my CTR-350 recommendation in bullet #2 without also mentioning the awesome mobile broadband device I use with it.  I been through a few different mobile broadband devices over the last few years and this is by far my favorite.  It’s fast, reliable, and easy to configure.  It gives me endless hours of fast broadband access on the go, which is precisely what I require.  Note: My company also let me try the Sierra Wireless Overdrive Hotspot. And while cool in concept, it just doesn’t work as reliably as the CTR-350 and 595U do in combination.
  4. Apple iPad or Amazon Kindle – I know, I know… Why own both, right?  Well, I owned a Kindle for reading books and then I went out and bought an iPad for everything else.  The Kindle is still better for reading books, but the iPad is much more versatile.  I rarely take both with me on the road at the same time, but I always have one or the other.  It just depends on whether I think I’ll be doing more book reading or more online reading, tweeting, etc.
  5. MacBook Pro 13.3 Inch Laptop – It’s small, super quick, reliable, versatile… pretty much the best darn laptop I have ever owned.  And it looks sexy too.  If you don’t own a MacBook yet, you should consider giving this one a try.
  6. Kensington iPhone Battery Pack and Charger (and my iPhone) – The iPhone is a no-brainer.  But what’s the best accessory I’ve ever purchased for my iPhone?  Well, that would be the Kensington iPhone Battery Pack and Charger.  It’s compatible with the iPhone 3GS/3G/2G, some iPods, and any mobile device with a mini-USB connector.  I have charged my iPhone from empty to full with this life saving road warrior device many times.
  7. Dropbox – This online file storage service works flawlessly and is extremely easy to integrate.  It allows me to grab documents, presentations, custom scripts, etc. and view them on my iPad or Macbook on the go.  Dropbox also allows me to create public links to my files (even really large files) so I can share them with others via email or social media.
  8. Persol 2720 Sunglasses – Polarized crystal lens guaranteed to protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays wherever you are.  Oh, and James Bond wears them too.  So yeah, I feel ten times cooler when I have them on.
  9. Multi-Use Car Charger – Because a cell phone with no battery juice is useless when your rental car breaks down on the side of the road during a long road trip.  My multi-use car charger allows me to charge up to four devices at once.  This unit turns one auto cigarette lighter port into two, has two USB charging ports, and provides a heavy-duty 20 amp capacity.
  10. Small Moleskine Notebook – These days, almost all of my work is performed digitally on my Macbook or iPad, but when it comes time for a brainstorming session my Moleskine notebook is my tool of choice.  The analog nature of the Moleskine notebook and a ballpoint pen somehow sets my mind free when I need to grind out a few new ideas.  And it’s so ultra portable, I pretty much bring it with me wherever I go.

What are some of the best travel gadgets and tools you’ve used recently?  Do you have any additional recommendations for us geeky business travelers?  Please share them with us in the comments.

Photo by: Victor