Category Archives: Inspiration

conviction

“Don’t allow your mind to tell your heart what to do. The mind gives up easily”
― Paulo Coelho

Conviction – a strong belief in a cause.     What are you convicted of?   What are you doing that you believe in so deeply that nothing interferes with getting the result you want.     It takes conviction to plow through difficult circumstances to achieve a noble goal.     It is a quality that not a lot of people have.     We live in  a society where things should be easy, that we should be able to obtain things easily.

What does it take to live a life with conviction?

1. Clarity on what it is you want to do.   Being crystal clear on what your purpose is, on what your goals are and how to realize those goals.   Without clarity, without focus things are blurred and confusing.    Clarity of purpose gives rise to direction.   Seeing as we are goal seeking beings and that happiness flows from achieving goals big or small means that we should focus on “being” and “doing”.

2. Competence, the ability “to do”.   Competence increases your self-esteem.  If you believe you can do it, you probably can.   It may take work and practice to develop the competence you need to get the results you want, so work on developing your skills.   What one thing can you do today to improve your skills?

3. Making it real.   What do you absolutely want to accomplish in your life?  What is stopping you?   What is holding you back from living full-out right now?  List all those reasons, yes, write them all down.   Now look at the list, is it true, is everything reason that you wrote down stopping you from living that life you want to live?

Living with conviction means that there is a way to achieve your goal even in the midst of all the stuff that happens.   It means that it is important to realize that result, whether it is a special trip, a new college degree, a new career, a better relationship or making something better in your life.   If you not convicted that life can be better for you than what will?  It’s your life not someone else’s, it is your choice and it must be your conviction to make that life real for you.

What would you do if it really mattered?

What would it take for you to be convicted to take action for a cause you believed in … you?

In this video clip you’ll learn about a person who was convicted and about another person who was convicted to make a change.   What passion, what energy, what goal can you focus on and achieve?   The one that you totally believe in and one that you are willing to make the right sacrifices to achieve.

Take a look!

confidence

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”   Eleanor Roosevelt

What is confidence?   It is the ability to match expectations with actual results.   If we expect with certainty that we can do something and than aren’t able to achieve that result then feedback to self is negative.   If we can do something like tie a shoe with success we become more confident that we can be achieve a result and that positive feedback reinforces our confidence.

Confidence can be increased:

1. Mastery – practicing until you have developed a demonstrated proficiency in the area you want to improve in.

2.  Contribute to the success of others – help someone else develop their skills and in most cases your skill will increase as well.

3. Encouragement – getting positive feedback from someone who has skills in the  area you want to improve.   Using positive affirmations to help bolster your belief that you can do better are useful as well.   The children’s program Bob the Builder says,  “Can we build it? Yes we can!” Can we ChaCha? Yes we can!

4. Imagery – imagine what the completed result will look like.   This is something that sports figures use to create a positive outcome by first doing the routine in the mind before actually doing the event.   Gymnasts walk-thru their routine mentally imagining each move being perfectly executed.

5. Transferral – transform fear into excitement.   The brain doesn’t interpret the difference between fear and excitement in terms of experience.   The fear sensation is the same as high excitement and people think they are experiencing fear when what they are feeling is excited.   A person who is about to speak before a large group says they are fearful and often it is excitement that they feel.

6. Physical management – manage the tension in your muscles and relax rather than get more tense as you are about to do something new.   Confidence comes with repeated success and with that people can relax.   Performing in big events, sports, appearing in front of large audiences can for the first time create physical sensations that decrease performance.  Practice the mental imagery of success to bring down the tension of that big performance.

Confidence is often tested in big events, like Mountain Biking downhill at high speeds.   The skill it takes to go full on and full-out on technically difficult courses requires a high degree of confidence.

Would you be willing to try a high-speed descent on two wheels?

relief

“How we perceive a situation and how we react to it is the basis of our stress. If you focus on the negative in any situation, you can expect high stress levels. However, if you try and see the good in the situation, your stress levels will greatly diminish.” Catherine Pulsifer

It’s a job, it’s barely a job and every morning getting the foot on the floor is more and more difficult.   It’s a life, it’s barely a life and every day it seems that the bills grow larger and larger.   It’s a relationship, it’s barely a relationship with more and more time spent in arguing about each other’s faults and failures.  It’s a diet, it’s barely a diet that works, that is helpful in losing weight.   It’s motivation, it barely the motivation that is needed to improve all the things that are going wrong in life.

There are many people looking for some sort of relief, a way to get through the day, to get through the moment and to feel like there is some purpose and meaning in life.    For many people it is a struggle to stay focused and get something done, there is no relief in their life, just the constant struggle to make it through the day.

What if there was a way to get relief but a way to get more out of life so that everyday is purpose filled and engaging?  What would it be like to feel alive everyday?  What would it be like?

In many cases it is the way we think about life that makes it a struggle.  The difference between an optimistic look at life and a pessimistic look at life is the difference between happiness and despair.     Relief comes when we start looking at life in a new way.

Here are three ways to find relief.

1. Meditate.   Studies show that meditation is reducing stress,  improving happiness and yielding better results in school.

2. Resilience.   People who are able to bounce back from unfortunate circumstances get relief faster.   Increasing positive to negative thoughts ratio increases resilience.

3. Mindfulness.  Focus on creating positive thoughts that break the cycle of negative thinking.

When we shift our mental picture of what is happening to us at any given time from negative to positive we enjoy greater relief.  Moving from worry to opportunity creates a sense of excitement and wonder in our lives.  Ingesting positive thoughts improves our mood and ability to bounce back from bad things in our life.

Where do you need relief?   What can you do today to generate positive thoughts?   What do you really want to be different in your life?

Relief is available to you when you meditate, bounce back and are mindful of what can be done rather than focusing on what has happened.   Relieve your mind of the burden of negative thinking and you will experience relief.

inspired

“Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true.”  Leon J. Suenes

Inspire, “to be the cause of, to bring about”,  to be inspired, to bring about something new, a new idea, a new thought, a new action or a new self.    Napolean Hill wrote, “whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.”

Inspire, “to breathe in, to take in a new air”.    When we draw in a deep breath of air we become filled with something new and fresh.   For many people the idea of taking in a deep breathe of clean fresh air only happens if they have to move more quickly than normal.   To breathe in means to take action, to take responsibility and to live fully.   It means feeling the air rush through the body with some mad purity.   The air we breathe in wants to inspire not only the blood cells but our very thoughts.

Perhaps if we were inspired we would move out of a job that no longer satisfies.   With a bit of inspiration we could create something new, something wonderful, or something majestic.   With a powerful inspirational moment we might make a change in our life that would produce meaning and significance.

What does it take to inspire you?   A bolt of lightning?

“It is only when we silent the blaring sounds of our daily existence that we can finally hear the whispers of truth that life reveals to us, as it stands knocking on the doorsteps of our hearts. ” K.T. Jong

Could we be inspired by a  colorful landscape where the wind makes the leaves dance? 

Maybe it is a quiet shore, where the waves gently tap out a magic code.  

Or could it be the  rhythmic sounds of a waterfall cascading through your thoughts.

 What inspires you?

Take time out right now, take in a deep breath and slowly exhale.   Breathe in again and this time close your eyes and let your mind just go quiet, what do you see, what do you hear, what inspirational thought did you hold in  your hand?

Maybe it takes a different perspective … take a look.  Inspired?

Take a moment and see what your mind can conceive and believe.

It’s too much

“The sheer availability of information… has launched a tsunami of seeking… at the same time, the information glut contributes to pervasive cynicism, fragmentation, and a sense of helplessness. ” Michael J. Gelb

It seems that more and more people are suffering from the effects of “too much”.   “Too much” information, too much work, too much busyness, too much stress, too much …

The “too much” symptoms look a lot like ADHD when you start peeling the onion a bit.    People start losing focus,  are unable to manage time effectively, forget simple things, and generally feel overwhelmed with their world.   The Wall Street Journal just published an article that talks about the fact that many people may be approaching some practical limits of the mind.

Executive function impairment which is thought to be the central issue in ADHD is now impacting a greater part of the population.   Recent ADHD statistics show that ADHD is rising in the population.    With the rapid increase of information (games, TV, video, internet, etc.) the ability for the brain to process all that information is resulting in stress and decreased brain function.

Looking at the ADHD statistics you can see that there is an increase in overall ADHD incidence.    The rate of increase of ADHD could be tied to many factors but one thing that is probably the most pressing is the rate of information growth and information saturation in the lives of young people.

While the appearance of ADHD seems to be growing along with the growth of information it could also be tied to a  linear logical system of education where the creative and physical aspects of education are being eliminated.   When executive memory function starts decreasing there is a rise in negative behaviors in teenagers and young adults.   Finding ways to reduce brain overload is going to be critical as we move towards a more information rich society.

In children executive memory function is increased  by taking time to engage in physical and creative arts.    It is precisely the things that are being pulled out of the education system marginalizing more and more children.  If there was a resurgence of arts and physical activity there would be a wholesale improvement in the education system.

Take this a step further and we see adults being inundated by information and not having the time to take a break from the onslaught of data.    Moving away from strict linear logical work would have great benefits.

What do you do?

1. Take creativity breaks

2. Exercise and increase your oxygen uptake.

3. Work on exercises that focus on short term memory work.

As the influx of information increases the symptoms of ADHD will likely increase as the more right brained thinkers slip under the tide of more information.   The rate of information growth isn’t going to stop it is only going to increase and in order for children and adults to thrive in this new age more focus and more energy should be applied to practicing things that increase the executive memory function.

Paul Saffo noted that, “Point of view” is that quintessentially human solution to information overload, an intuitive process of reducing things to an essential relevant and manageable minimum.  In a world of hyper abundant content, point of view will become the scarcest of resources.”

What do you think?  Are we teetering on the edge of information overload?  Are we damaging the next generation of leaders by removing the arts and physical activity from our education process?   What would you do?

 

don’t you wish

“You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it true. You may have to work for it, however.”   Richard Bach

Wisheswishes …more wishes …

I wish I had a new job.

I wish I had a new car.

I wish I had more money.

I wish I could go on vacation.

I wish I could have _______________   (fill in the blank).

What are you wishing for?

What would you do if you could find a way to make those wishes come true for you?   What would it feel like to find a new job, to patch a relationship, to earn more money?   Not through some quick fix program that promises more than could ever sound real, like how to be a millionaire in a few easy steps.

Getting results for you comes at a price and that price is commitment to a goal, a passion to improve and a desire to the real work that is necessary.  All to often people are looking for a quick way to get to their goals and the real answer is that it takes work and time.   There is no “secret” answer to success.  There is no “secret” formula that will make you rich.   Darren Hardy wrote this,  “No matter what your past has been, you have a spotless future.”, and that summarizes everyone’s future potential.

If you are wishing for something then start taking steps towards making that wish come true.   What steps would it take?  What new skills would it take?  What would it cost to get your wishes to come true?   Taking a realistic, objective and introspective look at who you are and what you want to do will start the process of making positive lasting change.

 

Identify,

What do I want to change?

When do I want to make the change?

What are the benefits of the change?

What am I scared of?

I have heard from people this, “When I start to change I always go back to where I was before and it looks like the same old thing.   Time after time I have tried to change and I get nowhere, what do I do then?”   It is frustrating to start to make a change and end up right back where you started, it is tiring to make attempts that don’t produce results.

I usually ask people what was their level of commitment to the change and how did they follow through with the change.  I ask them who was holding you accountable along the way.   I ask them what small steps that they were taking and how did they celebrate success as they moved forward.   In many cases people don’t celebrate success but they do take time to say, “I am not good enough”, “What an idiot”, “Who did I think I was to attempt change”, I guess I better just quit it’s not going to work anyway”.   Those phrases thought or spoken just pull a person down into a very negative place and that causes most people to quit.

So, what separates a person who does succeed and those that don’t?   The successful people push just a bit harder when the going gets tough.   Successful people work through the challenges and stand firm in the face of resistance.   (It doesn’t mean being foolhardy, it means being strong and creating opportunities to win).

What are you wishing for?   What do you want to do with your wishes?  When will you start making your wishes come true?

“Desire is the starting point of all achievement”  Napolean Hill

our greatest weakness

“Our greatest weakness is the weakness of an undisciplined mind.”  Marianne Williamson

The day started off with a list of things to accomplish, energy surged as the reward of completing the list was an hour of exercise.    In a few minutes the schedule already suffered a setback.   An email that should have taken five minutes to respond to, took 45 minutes.    The only meeting of the morning was missed and that meant finding out what happened.   It wasn’t long before the items on the list weren’t the things that were going to get done.    The vision of having a whole hour to exercise shrunk to 30 minutes, then 15 and then put off until tomorrow.

Our days don’t start off with the idea that before 9:00AM all the plans for the day are ruined.   We start off with the greatest of intentions and then “IT” happens.   Something will happen to shift the day in a direction that doesn’t even remotely resemble the original things that needed to get done.   What would it be like to start and finish a day the way it was planned?

Often the disruptions to the desired goals that you had for the day really should be done.  It is those things that push you off the desired path.   Combating disruptions takes a disciplined mind.

A disciplined mind is a habit just like other routine activities in your life, it takes at first a conscious effort to create the patterns needed to stay on task.   It takes “will power” to maintain the original focus and to stay away from doing things that while interesting don’t move you towards your real goals.   Be self-disciplined and avoid being lazy.   The laziness factor is accepting that other things that enter into your day are a priority.   If the things you had planned for yourself are important to accomplish then nearly anything else that gets added should be added to the end of the list not at the top.

How do you create a disciplined mind?

1. Take action – don’t put anything off.

2. If it is important make sure it gets done.

3. If it isn’t important don’t do it.

4. Avoid being lazy.  Do it now.

It is really easy to put off what should be done and do what doesn’t need to be done.  It is easy to be lazy and hard to get what needs to be done, DONE.

If it were easy people would be able to keep a New Year’s resolution.  If it were easy people would be getting more done in less time.
If it were easy people would have the time they need to do the things they want to do.
If it were easy people would discipline their minds.

“What you have to do and the way you have to do it is incredibly simple. Whether you are willing to do it, that’s another matter.” Peter F. Drucker