Monthly Archives: July 2011

asking for help .. a sign of weakness?

“Whenever I have knocked, a door has opened. Whenever I have wandered, a path has appeared. I have been helped, supported, encouraged and nurtured by people of all races, creeds, colors and dreams. ” Alice Walker

We live in a society that revere’s independence and strength, a society that says “I can do it” and we believe it to be true.   Asking for help then is admitting you don’t have what it takes to get it done.   It is that idea of rugged independence that holds so many people back from asking, “can you help me?”.

Asking for help has been or is a sign of weakness for far too many people.   As a result not asking for help has left people stuck for long periods of time.   “I am not going to ask for help because I can do it.”, says many a man.   Asking for help is often the right thing to do.  It accelerates the desired result.   It frees you up to do other things, more important things.

What is it costing you not to ask for help?   For many people life is just way to short as it is and to achieve the very things they desire most (pride isn’t going to get in the way) asking for help to get there is one of the first things they do.  They realize that the cost of a mentor, coach, guide or teacher is far less than the cost of missing opportunities for creating the life they want to live.

We do the same thing with retirement.  Some people start saving  in their 20’s and by the time they are 62 they can have a large saving account in place due to the fact that their money is gaining interest each year.   There are those who wait until later and have to pay over twice as much to reach the same goal.   The truth is that if you start early (ask for help now) you’ll get much further much quicker than waiting.

Why is it that people wait until it is unbearable before they decide to make the changes they want?   It might be the belief that something will happen that will allow them to get the result they want sooner and that rarely happens.   For example think about the person who is lost and won’t stop to ask for help.   Their appointment is now just five minutes away and they not even close to the destination.   Maybe the next street will be the right place they think, and it isn’t and now they are just getting frustrated and more frustrated.   It would have taken far less time to ask for help and arrived at the destination early.

What is it that you want to do?   What are you waiting for?

If you don’t know how to get where you want to go then ask for help?   Not sure what you want to do then ask for help?   Each day you wait is a day you can’t get back.

Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness it is a sign of strength.   Why wait another moment, start getting more out of your life today.

 

“Procrastination is opportunity’s assassin.”  Victor Kiam

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to live means to ….

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” Harold Whitman

One of the phrases I hear quite often is “If I”.   If I had more money my life would be better.  If I had a better job my life would be better.  “If I”.   It’s a slow death sentence to an unlived life.

What would happen if you replaced “If I” with “When I”.   Not “if I” could do this or that, but rather “When I”.   Take control of your life.  Instead of living life as if each moment were a mystery start creating a vision statement.    Take that vision statement and translate that into a set of goals that extent out 5 to 10 years.   Write down the goals in BIG”  letters, yes big letters.   Make it visible to you and to others.  Let them know you are going to go “BIG” and start living your life as you really want to.

Living BIG doesn’t mean living foolishly it means creating a set of plans that are achievable, doable and lead towards your vision.   It means living with constancy of purpose and having the ability to work through the hard times.  It means celebrating success along the way even if it is only a small, small step.   Moving forward is not always easy so be patient and keep pushing forward.    It is those who break through those barriers and hurdle the trials that reach their vision.

When a vision, a compelling vision is reached it doesn’t mean that it is the end.  It really is just a new beginning.  When the vision is realized a new vision, a new mission is created that will raise you to a new level of living.

How do you start living?  (If you need a clue watch the video)

1. Make a commitment to yourself that you will define your purpose.

2. Create that purpose for your life.
– Take a walk and bring with you a pad of paper.  Find a place where you can be alone and in the quiet, in the serenity of the moment think about what you really want to do and be.   Write down your thoughts and observe trends, patterns and ideas.   What is the same about them and what is unique?   Star the ones that make your heart beat a bit faster.
– Refine the list, get the key things from your list.  Put the  “doables” in one column and put the “reach for the stars” in another and put the routine items in a third column.
– What made it into the “reach for the stars column”.?
– Choose the most compelling, most awesome, most powerful ideas and write a goal statement.

–   I am going to ________________________ in 5 years.
– Write a story that describes this ultimate dream of yours.   What does it really look like to you.   What will it take to make it real?   What new skills will you need?  What risks will you take?   What will require change?
–  Be clear about what you want.   Be crystal clear.

3. Tell others what you are going to do or change.  Make it BIG.

4. Make it real  (start doing)

5.  Give of yourself to others.

When you create your “Start Living Plan” you may notice that you pull back from it believing it isn’t possible or it is foolish to believe in such great things.   Work towards the goal, even if it is only for 15 minutes a day.  Take a few minutes each day and work on the goal.   Turn off the distractions, the TV or whatever pushes you away from the pursuit of the dream.   If you want the dream to be realized sooner put more effort into it.

If you aren’t sure which way to go, enlist a coach to work with you.   A coach can hold you accountable and keep those commitments in the forefront of your mind.  Fighting the battle alone is one of the reasons so many people give up on their dreams before they start.   Be one of the ones that makes your dream come real.

All successful people men and women are big dreamers. They imagine what their future could be, ideal in every respect, and then they work every day toward their distant vision, that goal or purpose.”  Brian Tracy

procrastination … certainly it can wait

“If we accept and internalize the fact of our own mortality, then, by definition, we have to deal with the essential questions of how we live and spend our allotted time. We have to stop procrastinating, pretending that we have forever to do what we want to do and be what we long to be.”   Surya Das

Let the other person procrastinate while you take the opportunity.    If you wait for the other person to do what you have longed to do you won’t ever get started.   It is easier to put it off for a few more minutes, a hour, a day and before long a lifetime.   Perhaps it isn’t intentional that you are putting it off that goal, it just happens that way.   If you are telling yourself, “I know I’ll get started as soon as I finish up _________________”.   How important is that thing you are finishing up?   Is it just another diversion or delay in starting what you really know needs to be done.

Wait, wait, I can do that in 5 more minutes, it really won’t matter will it if I just wait five more minutes.   How long have you been waiting just five more minutes.   “I’ll get to it in a minute”, might be the words that are said, but in reality it was only a way to delay the start of what should have been done a day ago.

It was yesterday that you made that promise to yourself to change, to make your life better and more successful wasn’t it.   Before yesterday it was the day before, it was the same story a year ago when you promised yourself that you would change and now where are you?   If you are in the same place then procrastination hasn’t been your friend it is slowly and surely robbing you of the strength you need to make a difference.

“I’ll get to it, really I will”, are those your words?   What happened, did you really get to it?

For many people procrastination is a way of tricking the body into releasing adrenaline, a hormone that boosts your energy for a short period of time.  Sure, it has worked in the past and helped you with that last minute assignment, but is it working for you now?

Start with being honest with yourself.   Do you have a habit of putting things off?

What are you putting off now?

What have you been putting off?   What has the impact been?

What would you like to see different?

When will you begin?   When will you begin?

“If we wait for the moment when everything, absolutely everything is ready, we shall never begin.” ~Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev

break through the fear

‘You block your dream when you allow your fear to grow bigger than your faith.”
Mary Manin Morrissey

Fear!   Fear of change.   Fear of not changing.  Fear of what might happen tomorrow.  Fear of what might happen today.   Fear it stops us right where we are and prevents us from being who we are capable of being.

In the wrong career and afraid to make that change.
In the right career and afraid the job might go away.
In the wrong relationship and fearing what might happen.
In the right relationship and afraid that it won’t last.

What are you afraid of?   What is stopping you from making the change that will allow you to grow and prosper?   It might be because you are afraid that even as bad as it is now it could get worse.  Fear traps people into thinking that the  only outcome that could happen is worse than what they are experiencing right now.

Fear robs people of the confidence to make change work for them.    Many people, maybe most people only look at what could go wrong in their life rather than what could go right.   Instead of looking at what could go wrong peer at the possibilities that things will go right.  It doesn’t mean that it will be easy though.  It does mean that with persistence, hard work and a positive attitude that reaching your goals is possible.

A recent story about Louis Zamperini might encourage you to make those changes you have been putting on your list of things you’d like to do.

In many cases fear turns dreams into obstacles that feel too big to overcome.  What happens if I fail and lose, and lose everything then what, where do I go from there?  It is the story of those who are rich and famous.   To have found something they are passionate about and then forged ahead to make that idea or dream happen.   Sometimes they did and sometimes they didn’t.   When we hear the stories of failure we believe that it what would happen to us.  Who am I to reach my goals and dreams.   If those that I know haven’t then why should I? That is the story of fear, and fear is winning in far greater numbers  and it is also robbing possibilities.

What are you waiting for?

1. What is your vision for your life (what is your unique contribution going to be?)

2. What is stopping you from starting towards that vision?

3. What would make you feel safe enough to try?

4. What are some steps you could take today?

5. Who will help you stay accountable to achieving your goal?

Imagine what it would feel like to reach your goals.  Imagine what it would look like to reach your goals.  Imagine what it would sound like to reach your goals.

Then say, “I am good enough to reach my goals with some work”.   Now, without delay begin that journey that you have longed to take and start experiencing what it would be like to reach your goal.   Do it today!

“People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going.” Earl Nightingale

no strings attached …

“I’ve got no strings
To hold me down
To make me fret, or make me frown”  from the movie Pinocchio

What would it be like to not have so many strings  holding you down?

“I need help making a decision”

“I need a new job”

“I am in debt and don’t know what to do”

“I am divorced and a couple of kids, and a job that I don’t like, what do I do?”

“I am in a business that isn’t making any money, what do I do next?”

“I have ADHD can can’t concentrate or focus, who will hire me?”

“I want to work for myself.  I don’t like being tied to a desk all day long.   What do I do next?”

“I hate my job but I love the people I work with and I can’t just quit”.   Imagine working at a job you hate to do where you’re not appreciated by the people who hired you.   The work gets more tedious each day you walk into the office and you have to have a job because there are bills to pay.   Not only are there strings from the job that hold you captive there are other strings and bills that have to be paid, mortgage, insurance, car payments, phone, internet, TV,  and many other things that make life easier (with strings attached) to pay for.

Are you feeling bound by the strings of life?   What would it feel like to start untangling that web of string that is robbing you of the joy you want to experience?

Letting go of the strings.

1. Take responsibility for your life, all of your life.

2. Create a vision, for your future.

3. In 5 years where do you want to be?

4. In 3 years where do you want to be?

5. In 1 year where do you want to be?

6. In 6 months where do you want to be?

Start today.  Take each string and untangle it and then create a plan to remove it until there are no strings attached.

If you should wonder why, then give this movie a try.

Find a way to detach those strings that are holding you back from living the life you desire.

“It may be that we are puppets-puppets controlled by the strings of society. But at least we are puppets with perception, with awareness. And perhaps our awareness is the first step to our liberation.”  Stanley Milgram

awareness

“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive. ”
Howard Thurman

Awareness.   When did you become aware that you weren’t happy?   When did you become aware that your job wasn’t as good as you hoped it would be?   When did you become aware that your significant relationship wasn’t going where you had desired it would go?   When did you become aware that your finances weren’t going to be enough?   When did you first become aware?

Many people aren’t aware that they want to make a change or what to change.    It isn’t as though they aren’t feeling comfortable with the way things are going, they aren’t comfortable but they aren’t aware of what they really want either.

You can be aware of pain but not aware of the source of pain and being aware allows you to look beyond the pain to the source of the pain.

There are two domains of awareness, your personal awareness or being self-aware and then external awareness which is knowing what is happening around you.    When we are aware we see things differently.  We pay more attention to the things in our environment.   We notice noises, temperature, food, music, what we touch and more.   We become more alive when we are aware.   Sometimes that awareness is also frightening.   We can also ignore what we don’t want to experience and that deadens our lives or pushes us into darkness.

Here’s a question you can answer to begin testing your awareness.

When you are at your best you are __________________________________ ?

Fill in the story.   What did you notice?  What did you feel or sense when you described your best?

Increase you awareness of the world around you by noticing the beauty that is nearby.

Write down 5 things that you see that are beautiful.

Now, write down 5 things about yourself that you appreciate.

What did you realize or learn as a result of becoming aware of you and your surroundings?

 If you can control a mans thinking, you don’t have to worry about his actions. If you can determine what a man thinks you do not have worry about what he will do. If you can make a man believe that he is inferior, you don’t have to compel him to seek an inferior status, he will do so without being told and if you can make a man believe that he is justly an outcast, you don’t have to order him to the back door, he will go to the back door on his own and if there is no back door, the very nature of the man will demand that you build one.  Carter G. Woodson