Welcome to 30 Minute Living!

Marilynn Hood"Little by little does the trick." Aesop

You can change your money.

You can change your life.

It doesn't have to take forever.

You just have to start.


In 30 minutes, you could . . .

• Balance your accounts
• Track your expenses
• Search for a better mortgage rate
• Start preparing your online will
• Read a chapter in a personal development book


Regularly taking small steps such as these can put you on the road to financial independence! Or in the same 30 minutes, you could stretch out on the couch and watch a sitcom. Which takes you nowhere!

Whatever you would like to accomplish, today is the day to start. Take small steps, in the right direction, day after day, and you WILL achieve your goals.

That's what 30 Minute Living is all about, and it's how to make things happen!

May the blog posts which follow provide you with insight, information, and inspiration for handling your money and for creating a rich and fulfilling life for you and yours.

Finding Work You Love!

Dan Miller

Career Coach Dan Miller Helps People Find Work They Love!

by Marilynn E. Hood

Getting laid off from your job or not having your contract renewed can be a real blow, both to your sense of self worth and to your pocketbook. As you’re revising your resume, take the time to consider all your options.

And whether you still have a job or not, here’s the real question you want to address—

If I had all the money I needed and there were no obstacles in my way, what would I be doing?

No, it’s not sitting on the beach or playing golf or [fill in the blank] for the rest of your life, because after a few months you’d be bored out of your skull.

As one of my friends who had to retire because of health problems stated after only a month or so of leisure—“Oh, to have meaningful work again!”

Well, you can—with a little effort and soul searching . . . .

Change Your Life in 31 Minutes

Special thanks to my guest blogger, Derek C. Olsen for this great article. I predicted his new book, The Four Week Financial Turnaround, would soon become a best seller, and I was right! Yes, it's that good! If you're ready to stop complaining about your money and take action, Derek shows you how to make real changes happen. And you can start with the next 31 minutes!

Derek C. OlsenChange? Yes, please.


You are here, and you want to be there. Change is the only thing that will get you there.

Join me in spending just 31 minutes pondering your current and future financial situation. A minute-by-minute Q & A that will change your financial life. Be brave and literally write down your answers. Then write down your goals and action steps. Then, take action. Change is waiting.

Ready, Set, CHANGE!

Stay Focused on Your Core Genius

Stay Focused on Your Core Genius
by Jack Canfield

I believe you have inside you a core genius... some one thing that you love to do, and do so well, that you hardly feel like doing anything else. It’s effortless for you and a whole lot of fun. And if you could make money doing it, you’d make it your lifetime’s work. Successful people believe this, too. That's why they put their core genius first. They focus on it—and delegate everything else to other people on their team.

For me, my core genius lies in the area of teaching, training, coaching and motivating. I love to do it, I do it well, and people report that they get great value from it. Another core genius is writing and compiling books. Along with my co-author Mark Victor Hansen and others, I have written, co-authored, compiled and edited more than 100 books.

Compare that to the other people in the world who go through life doing everything, even those tasks they’re bad at or that could be done more cheaply, better, and faster by someone else. They can’t find the time to focus on their core genius because they fail to delegate even the most menial of tasks.

When you delegate the grunt work—the things you hate doing or those tasks that are so painful, you end up putting them off—you get to concentrate on what you love to do. You free up your time so that you can be more productive. And you get to enjoy life more.

So why is delegating routine tasks and unwanted projects so difficult for most people?

5 Reasons to Keep Cash Value Life Insurance

Before canceling any life insurance policy, examine ALL its features first!

by Marilynn E. Hood

Do you already have life insurance that builds up savings, or cash value?

Are you thinking about surrendering your policy and getting term insurance instead?

Before you do, here are some things you'll want to consider.

Term Insurance Can Be the Best Choice. . . .

Financial advisors often sing the praises of term life insurance, and with good reason. For many people, it’s truly their best choice. Take, for example, a young family with small children and a limited budget. Term insurance often provides a cost effective way to supply them with the large amount of insurance money they need. Should one of the parents die early, it will be many years before the kids are grown and through college. The surviving parent needs a lot of dough to help with all that, and term insurance is almost always their best choice.

But Not for Everyone!

But one-size-fits-all rules are like those big, sloppy t-shirts: they fit a few people well, many people poorly, and some people not at all. Depending on your circumstances, term insurance may NOT be the best fit for you. In particular, if you already have a policy which builds cash value, you need to think long and hard before surrendering it.

7 Ways to Make Time for Success: Find Your Best Daily Schedule

Make Time Work FOR You!

by Marilynn E. Hood

Are you just trying to make it through the day? Wouldn’t it be great if you could maximize your days, finding time to take steps toward your goals and still get all your work done? And this without falling into a crumpled pile at the end of the day!

Jim Rohn is often quoted as saying, “Time is the best-kept secret of the rich.” It’s not that they get more time than anyone else. It’s the way they use their time. The following 7 tips offer suggestions for making the most of your time, because as Mr. Rohn also stated: “Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.”

1. Pay attention to you.

Get a piece of paper, and for several days jot down your level of energy and alertness at various times of the day. Make note of the activities you’re doing at these times as well. Your objective is to better match your activities with the appropriate times to do them.

Finding Your Strengths

Play to Your Strengths!

by Marilynn E. Hood

The child who stammered . . .Marcus Buckingham


As a child, Marcus Buckingham stammered. In fact, he stammered so badly that others could hardly understand him. Nothing seemed to help—not the best efforts of his parents, the therapy, or the numerous consultations with specialists. Nothing, that is, until Marcus, at the age of 12, just happened to uncover one of his greatest strengths.

Now speaks for a living!


Once he discovered this inner truth about himself, he then learned how to use it in order to speak without stammering. And it was this strength that later helped set him on the course he would ultimately pursue in life.

Buckingham is now a sought after speaker. He consults for some of the largest companies in the world. He’s even appeared on Oprah, conducting a workshop for women on career intervention (which has been made available to everyone—see Note 1 below).

Visualize and Affirm Your Desired Outcomes: A Step-by-Step Guide

Visualize and Affirm Your Desired Outcomes: A Step-by-Step Guide

by Jack Canfield

You have an awesome power that most of us have never been taught to use effectively.

Elite athletes use it. The super rich use it. And peak performers in all fields now use it. That power is called visualization.

The daily practice of visualizing your dreams as already complete can rapidly accelerate your achievement of those dreams, goals and ambitions.

Visualization of your goals and desires accomplishes four very important things.

6 Things to Check Before You Leave Your Driveway

Be Prepared Before You Turn the Key!

by Marilynn E. Hood

You're going to work, to school, to the store—just like you do all the time.

Then WHAM—you're hit!

Having had two cars totaled while out running errands, here are a few things I've learned to do. . . .

Driving a car is part of everyday life. It’s something you often do without thinking of the dangers involved. Yet, when you’re on the streets and highways, every car around you can potentially cause you harm, both physically and financially.

Accidents happen fast, and your life can change in an instant. If you’re not prepared beforehand, it will be too late after an accident occurs. So make a checklist of items to have in place before your car leaves the driveway, and go through it—every time. Your wellbeing and that of your passengers may depend upon your taking these few extra precautions:

When Financial Planning Meets Special Needs

Robby Lawrence

Sure, most parents try to plan for their child’s education. But what if your child has special needs? Often, these children must be cared for their entire lives, and financial planning can present a real challenge.

My writer friend, Beth Douglass Silcox, interviewed one such parent recently and discovered the innovative way this father is providing for his son’s future as well as his own. She shares Mike Lawrence’s remarkable story in her blog, which she also shares with us. Thanks, Beth!


Banana Bread for Robby

by Beth Douglass Silcox

Small mountains of dorm essentials dot every level of my house and I’m struck by the reality that my daughter will never again come home in quite the same way. All at once, I am sad and joyful.

Don’t get me wrong, I know this isn’t some unique revelation and I’m not going to drivel on and on. (Even though I wish I could because this is my first brush with really missing my kid.)

No, I’m counting my blessings like other parents out there, who would walk through fire to make sure their child flies into a positive future. And I’m thinking of a man I met last fall while writing a story about entrepreneurial fear for Success www.success.com magazine.

Mike Lawrence doesn’t take himself too seriously judging by his job title: Top Banana. When I queried Help A Reporter Out www.helpareporter.com looking for entrepreneurs willing to talk about their fears, Mike’s candor about debt and business expansion during a recession was right on track with my story focus.

Your Calling: Find It—Live It!

Find Your Calling3

Live Your Life in the Zone!

by Marilynn E. Hood

What is your calling in life? What is it that you’re good at doing, and that you also absolutely love doing? Many people struggle with this question but unfortunately fail to take the steps needed to find the answer. But that doesn’t have to be you! Here's how you can start today on a path toward living a more fulfilling life.

Why bother?

Your choice of career affects every other area of your life. For sure, few things impact your finances more! Few things can dampen your spirit more than spending the best hours of your day working at an unfulfilling job. You feel held back from what you could be doing, from what you could be accomplishing, from the person you could be becoming. Even if you find the pay rewarding, other elements of your being suffer. You feel the trade-off you have made and know that you have compromised who you were meant to be.

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