Monthly Archives: December 2010

New Year … new goals …

This is the time of year people start putting together a plan for the New Year.   The old year may not have been the year that was remarkable in any shape, so now, this New Year is a time to start over, start with a clean slate (tabula rasa).  

What will make this year different than the last one?    What new goals will you create and really carry out not just for a month or two but for the whole year?

What new powerful goals are you ready to put forth?   Who is going to hold you accountable for getting results?    Who will let be accountable for holding you to results?   How important are those goals to you?

On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being very low to none – 10 well defined and living them)

___  I am a person with goals and I sincerely desire to advance towards my goals.

___  I value learning, growing and contributing and taking action in my life.

___  I am continuously developing and nurturing relationships.

___  I believe in who I am and my ability to make positive change in my life.

____  I am willing to stop behaviors that limit my success.

____  I am confident that I can make the changes I desire in my life.

____  I am focused and driven towards my success.

____  I celebrate my successes

_____ I am loved and give love willingly.

_____ I am enjoying my life, I am happy to be alive.

Total up the number of points.   How did you do?   If you scored less than 80 then you might be feeling like there is an opportunity to live a better life.   If you scored over 80, what changes would allow you to live even a better life? 

As a starting place create a strategy for obtaining the goals you desire.   Start with a mission statement that defines what your unique purpose is.   What are you really trying to achieve?   What will enable you to sustain a passion for over a period of time?

Next define some goals, perhaps stair step goals that allow you to take the big goal and break it down into manageable pieces at a size that advances you without creating discouragement.      If the goal is weight loss do a little each week, and focus on the small step rather than trying to make the big goal happen quickly.

After you have your goals written down and well defined (what does success look like?) then define the action steps necessary to realize those goals.


Action step:  ( a small step to towards the goal)

Success is:  (what is a successful result)

Started:  (the date you started)

Realized: (the day you reached the goal)

Celebration: (what you will do to celebrate)

Accountability Partner: (Who can support you in your quest to success, someone that won’t judge your progress)

For each goal outline the steps you’ll take to realize those goals.   A popular method for creating a goal is to use the SMART process.

SPECIFIC:  What is the specific goal, so a general goal I want to lose weight needs to be defined as a number; I desire to lose 20 lbs in 4 months.
MEASURABLE:  The goal statement specified 20 lbs, so yes it is measurable.

ACTIONABLE:  It is possible to lose 20 lbs in four months, that would be 5 lbs a month, so if that is doable, then, yes!

REALISTIC:  5 lbs a month, is that something that you could do, about a pound a week.  Is that “realistic”, then yes!

TIME BOUND:  In 4 months to lose 20 lbs … that is the time to accomplish the goal.

If the Measurable, Actionable, Realistic and Time bound question are able to be answered with a “Yes” then the goal can be achieved.  If an answer is “No”, what would it take to make it a “Yes”.  Sometimes it requires rewording of the goal to contain measurable and time based objectives.

When you achieve your goal, find a way to celebrate that success.   Cheer yourself to greater to success.

When do you start?   TODAY … why wait another moment to live the life you been dreaming about.  Start living your life with intention, the intention of being fully 100% the person you were meant to be.

The steps

  1. Create a mission statement for your life.
  2. Create goals that support your mission.
  3. Break down the goals into smaller actionable steps
  4. Take action, start doing and reaching.
  5. Celebrate your success
  6. Grab the next goal and repeat the cycle.

Keep a journal of your progress and you’ll be surprised by how many positive changes you can make in a year.

“Goals.There’s not telling what you can do when you get inspired by them. There’s no telling what you can do when you believe in them. There’s no telling what will happen when you act upon them.”
Jim Rohn

happiness … matters

More and more research is revealing how important happiness is in our lives.   Happiness has a broad definition that spans emotions like joy, contentment, pleasure, satisfaction, cheerfulness, enjoyment, and fortune.   

One way to increase happiness is to be aware of the beauty around you, the sunrise, the sunset, the flight of a bird, the laugh of a child, a random smile, a mountain peak, an ocean wave, and more.   What things are you grateful for?  List them out, list at least three gratitudes each day.   Start in the morning with one gratitude before you leave for work.    Find something in the middle of the day to be grateful for and then as the day closes find another one.   Focus on the meaning of those things for a few minutes.

Then take a happiness break.

Take a few minutes to step back, laugh, and appreciate what you do have.

in the box thinking …

“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”
Walt Disney

Boxes everywhere and everyone has a box, a box they can call their very own.  It is a box filled with assumptions and rules.  Rules that govern what can be done and can’t be done, what is real and what isn’t.  It is the box of life and thinking inside the box is what most people do,  and it is what most organizations do.  

The box is the set of limitations that an individual, organizational or culture imposes upon itself.   Seeing outside the box is difficult because of the rules that prevent the question like “what is outside the box?” , because that is a scary question.  Outside of the box is a place of the unknown and that is scary for most people.

The mind is in the box.   The emotions are inside the box.   The box is a safe place.  

The box protects people from having others peer inside to see what is really going on.   The box is a mask, a familiar mask that others see.  Occasionally someone gets to peer inside the box, but not too often.

Some people feel restricted by the box and want something new and something different but all they see is the walls of the box.   The higher they jump the higher the sides of the box grow.   So, they yell, “LET ME OUT OF HERE!”.    Most people are dealing with their own boxes and don’t have any new ideas on how to get out of a box.   

How do you get out of the box?

One way to start thinking outside of the box is to have someone who encourages you to think outside of the box.   What makes outside of the box thinking work is a place where non-judgmental thinking can take place.  In other words all ideas are safe and can be explored and built upon.   Too often ideas get judged and that pulls people right back into the box.   Thinking outside the box means that people are permitted to take risks with a thought, and idea or even an emotion.  

Thinking outside of the box leads to possibilities.  

Are you ready to think outside the box?



“Great dreams… never even get out of the box. It takes an uncommon amount of guts to put your dreams on the line, to hold them up and say, “How good or how bad am I?” That’s where courage comes in.”    Erma Bombeck

put the smile on …

“Everytime you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.”   Mother Teresa

This is the time of year that people focus on giving.   Giving to those in need, giving to friends, giving to family and giving back to others in a meaningful way.   

Some people really get excited at the chance to give and others dread giving.   For the people that dread giving it is about, “Did I get the right gift?”, “Will they like it?”,  or “Will they like me for getting them the right gift?”.    At this time of year expectations are set at a higher plateau than any other time of the year.   The receiver is expecting something wonderful, the giver is hoping that whatever they are to give is going to be what the receiver wants.   For some people these expectations are too much and the season of giving becomes the season of stress.

Maybe it is those post gift conversations, “Did you really like that gift?” or “They didn’t thank me for that gift, what does that mean?”    Any of those thoughts or internal conversations point back to the source of the questions.   Why do those feelings exist?   What is behind those feelings and thoughts?

Let your gift be an expression of love and let your heart smile no matter what happens and let that smile radiate on your face.



“Peace comes from being able to contribute the best that we have, and all that we are, toward creating a world that supports everyone. But it is also securing the space for others to contribute the best that they have and all that they are.”

Hafsat Abiola

Where do you find peace?   Do you find it in yourself?   

At this time of year for many people peace is hard to find.   All many people want in their lives is a sense of peace, a sense of purpose and a sense of hope and they are unable to find it.    People hope to find peace in others, those who they know, who they have a close relationship with, a family member,  or a close friend.  

In reality peace is found by looking inward, looking deep inside for a presence that says “I am”.    When peace is found inside then peace can be shared outside.

messages to myself

“We are what we imagine ourselves to be.”
Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

What messages are you sending to yourself?

Where are you putting your thought energy?

How are your thoughts serving you today?

For many people they are stuck in their thoughts.   Their thoughts instead of leading them to accomplish great things drain them of the energy they need to move forward in life.

Think about how you thoughts control your emotions.   How do you feel when you think poorly of yourself?

What if you changed one thought today, just one, to something more positive and more beneficial for you?

Change a thought “I don’t have ….”, to “I desire to have …”.
Take the old negative pattern and replace it with a positive image of what you do want and focus on it for a day.   Shift your thinking patterns from worry to problem solving.

After creating a place for positive thoughts, thoughts that direct your life to positive outcomes, you will start to produce the results you desire.

A good place to start would be to turn off the TV, turn off the radio, stop reading the newspaper and any other source of information that is not building up your character.    Eliminate some of the negative information smog in your life and start the day with something that inspires your imagination.

Napoleon Hill wrote, “First comes thought; then organization of that thought, into ideas and plans; then transformation of those plans into reality. The beginning, as you will observe, is in your imagination.”    What a great place to start.

Courage to …

“I am not confident”

“I am not able to ….”

“I am lonely and alone …”

“I want more out of life but I don’t know how … ”

These are lines from people that are seeking something better in their lives.  Maybe it is a line that you have used yourself and are wondering, “Am I good enough”, “Am I able …”.

Those questions are often asked in a small voice and that restores for a moment the confidence that is lacking or missing.   Someone might feel sorry for me and would be able to connect with me for just a minute and that helps, but in the real day to day story  it is a cry for help and a desire to begin living a life that can be so much better. 

Life can be better and it takes work to make it better.  It takes an act of courage to change from not feeling good enough about yourself  to creating the life that is really desired.

“Courage , also known as fortitude, is the ability to confront fear, pain, danger, uncertainty or intimidation. It can be divided into “physical courage” — in face of physical pain, hardship, and threat of death — and “moral courage” — in the face of shame, scandal, and discouragement.”  (Wikiquote)

It takes courage to change, to become all that you can be and to give up the burdens that hold you back from being all that you could be.

It takes courage to to act and create the better tomorrow and hope that it can become what you truly desire.