Tag Archives: William James

start with one

“Everyone is familiar with the phenomenon of feeling more or less alive on different days. Everyone knows on any given day that there are energies slumbering in him which the incitements of that day do not call forth, but which he might display if these were greater. Most of us feel as if we lived habitually with a sort of cloud weighing on us, below our highest notch of clearness in discernment, sureness in reasoning, or firmness in deciding. Compared with what we ought to be, we are only half awake. Our fires are damped, our drafts are checked. We are making use of only a small part of our possible mental and physical resources.”   William James

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If you read the quote above you probably have had days where the energy to live fully just wasn’t there.   It was a day that you felt you needed to take off and just find a place to do nothing.   Where does your energy come from?   What makes you excited to participate in a new day?

What do you think is the biggest thief of energy?
1. To many things to do and no clear priorities
2. Nothing very interesting to do, not challenging or valuable
3. No external motivation, others encouraging you forward
4. Physical ailments or negative thinking

What would it take to activate you so that your day was filled with energy and positive outcomes?     You do realize that your energy doesn’t come from somewhere else, it comes from within you.   It comes from lifting your energy level up when it is down.  It comes from thinking about one thing that will produce a desired result.

Clarity and focus.   That is one way to get energy flowing.   Be clear on achieving one goal and focusing on achieving that goal.   Stay clear of distractions, email, conversation, or other activities that pull you away from that “one” thing.

revolution in the heart

“The greatest revolution of our generation is the discovery that human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives”  William James

Where does change get its impetus from?   What causes you to desire to change?   Is it an event that is so significant that you can’t ignore the tug it has on you?   Is it some trauma that you just can’t seem to escape?   Is it a career that is stifling your growth and ability to be who you really are?

In a sense it doesn’t matter what that change initiator is but what matters is that you recognized that something inside you wanted to change.   In many cases change doesn’t happen because something prevents that mobilizing force that wells in the pit of the stomach from ever getting strong enough to create movement.    Fear is one of those captivating forces that prevents substantial and important change to take place.   The fear that something might happen that would reduce or impact negatively a value you strongly identify with.

Change begins to occur when there is a revolution in the heart, when something is so big you cannot ignore it.

Do you have something in your heart calling out to you – change?

an attitude worth catching …

Not every day is going to be filled will blessings, joy and peace.  There are going to be days where something is going to drain you emotionally and physically.   It is how we respond during those draining days that are vitally important.   It is the attitude that we keep within and the attitude we display externally that will determine our direction.

Our problems and challenges will change us.   How we respond to the challenges and problems will reveal our character.  That doesn’t mean that we won’t struggle for a time or that we won’t feel upset about something because more than likely we will suffer a dip in the road.   Instead of falling into the dip the resolve should be to move out of the dip as quickly as possible.

How?   How do you get out of a dip before it turns into a rut?

“The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes.”  William James

We can alter our lives by altering our attitude.   We can think of what can be rather than what was.   We can think forward to something better or we can sink into the regret of yesterday.    We can choose to be thankful for today and hopeful for a better tomorrow.    We have the ability to choose our attitude in any circumstance.

Attitude is yours worth catching?

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finding the blindspot

Drivers of motor vehicles know that when they look in their side mirrors that there is a place where they can’t determine if there is a vehicle there or not.  That area is the blind spot.  If the mirrors are properly adjusted the blind spot can be minimized or even become non-existent.  Now if the rear view mirror is blocked and the side view mirrors are adjusted to eliminate the blind spot to the sides you’ll miss what is happening behind you.

Coaching is about helping people discover and eliminate their personal blind spots.  Now, some would say they have no blind spots and in that case coaching wouldn’t be needed.   Coaching is for those who want to make a step forward, and then another step and another until they have found all of their blind spots.

Is coaching about taking a risk?   Some people would be afraid or unsure that coaching is something they could benefit from.  Those people who engage in coaching are opportunity-focused.  That is they see the benefits of coaching to be far greater than any perceived risks.

Could it be that we are blind to the opportunities of transformational change?  In our own examined life we don’t see that there are benefits from seeking something greater than what we know now.  For some the curiosity of opportunity is great, far greater than the work and effort it takes to change transformationally to something better than they are today.

Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging.  William James

I would imagine that many people are reluctant to challenge themselves for it is in those great challenges that growth is possible and in the growth is change and change creates fear which causes people to back down from the challenge.  A coach helps manage the fear and assists in finding the path that leads to true growth.

you are powerful

William James wrote about man, “He possesses powers of various sorts which he habitually fails to use.”

 

If that quote is true then it means we have much more to offer the world, the country, the state, the city, the career, the family, the friends and yourself.  It means we aren’t living up to the capabilities we have.  It means we have more to give and we should.

 

What power do you have that you aren’t using?   What would you like to do?

What do you need to do to start using the powers you have?

break the habit

dsc00530“Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds.”  Franklin D. Roosevelt

What habits are working for you or against you?

We are programmed to routinize all that we do from eating breakfast to driving to work.  I’ll bet that you have driven to work or back to home and you don’t really remember making the trip, the trip seems like an illusion.  Have you had those experiences?

You may have heard you are what you eat.  There is truth in that as well.  We become what we make of ourselves.  What if you don’t like what you see?

How do you break the bad habits and replace them with new habits that can bring you to new levels of joy in your life.  “Even small changes at the root level of belief will produce amazing changes in behavior and performance”, writes Harry Alder.   Do you believe that?

Here’s a powerful thought … The only prerequisite is that you must commit to change and when you do the right people will show up to help you. (Canfield, “The power of focus”).

“Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.”  William James

Where do you start?

Start with a vision.  Where do you want your life to go?  If you’re not satisfied with the life you have today you do have the power to change it.  Look at your habits.  Which ones should be changed – really changed?  Move the big rocks one inch at a time.   Over time, perhaps 3-4 weeks of consistent rock solid behavior you’ll see things change.  Your dreams will start to become true.