A lot of people do not muster the courage to live their dreams because they are afraid to die.
A lot of people do not muster the courage to live their dreams because they are afraid to die.
Changing our day-to-day behaviors may be easier than previously imagined. By meditating on and repeating motivational and inspirational quotes, we are better prepared to change our thought patterns, behaviors and in turn, change our lives.
Here’s how it’s done.
If we believe something to be easy, we find little, if any struggle in accomplishing it. However, if we imagine something to be difficult to accomplish, then our struggle becomes more apparent. In fact, if we imagine that it is difficult to change a specific behavior, then we will always find experiences that will justify that belief.
Take this for example. We wake up one morning and decide that:
“This is the day I start losing weight. When things get difficult, I will not reach for junk food, but instead I will focus on something else to keep my mind occupied. It’ll be tough at first, but I’m going to give it a try.”
If you continue with this thought pattern and belief, don’t be surprised to find yourself struggling more often than not. Why?
If we look at this example closely we find a couple of thought patterns and beliefs already in place. We have determined to do something good for ourselves, but we do ourselves a disservice by choosing certain negative thought patterns, beliefs and words that go along with it.
We have said,
“When things get difficult….”
(This is already assuming that there will be difficult moments! Strike one!)
“It’ll be tough at first…”
(This is already assuming it will be difficult at first! Strike two!)
“…but I’m going to give it a try.”
(Remember the movie “The Karate Kid”…”There is no “try”, there is only “do”. Strike three!)
Now there are hundreds of products out there that will assist people in losing weight. Some, if not all of them, may work for various people at various stages of their goal. But for many people who have convinced themselves that losing weight is difficult, some products may fall short when our thought patterns are stronger than our desire to change.
Here is something that I’ve done to change a behavior I no longer desired.
I recently lost 20lbs in about 12 weeks. I didn’t like the way I looked, felt or even thought for that matter. I needed to change and take some action towards it.
First, I realized that I had to change my way of thinking about losing weight. My old thought patterns were no longer working for me. My thoughts were like little tiny pictures that I projected in my mind of how heavy I was. I no longer wanted these pictures or thought patterns a part of my life. I had to choose a thought pattern and belief that would be easier to think about.
I chose this thought,
“Losing weight is easier than I thought.”
Perhaps not the most ideal for everyone but it worked for me.
Secondly, I chose a word I wanted to focus on for that day, week or month to help me in accomplishing my goal (Start with just a day, or just an hour for that matter. Keep it simple.) The word I chose needed to be in relation to the change I want to make. For example, I chose the word “FOCUS”, as I felt that that’s what I needed to think about most of time; focusing more on losing weight than gaining it. Choose any word as long as it relates to your situation. (Attitude, Energy, Action, Believe…)
Following that, I scoured the Internet for motivational and inspirational quotes that resonated within me that related to that specific word I chose. Quotes that I could remember, especially ones that really spoke to what I wanted to accomplish.
But here’s the most important part.
I needed quotes that were powerful enough to change my thought patterns the moment I read them. Quotes that REALLY spoke to me when I my eyes fell upon them. Quotes that forced me to pause and think for a moment. Quotes that had that extra “edge” where my mind said, “Yes. This is one.”
These are all signs of a quote that held power for me. I “focused” in on the following quotes.
“All that we are is the result of what we have thought.” Buddha
“The only way to discover the limits of the possible, is to go beyond them into them impossible.” Arthur C. Clarke
“It’s not what you achieve in the end that matters, it’s who you become in the process.” Author Unknown
In fact, I found dozens of quotes that I resorted to from time to time, but these three I always came back to. They spoke of who I was, what I wanted to accomplish and who I wanted to become as I worked towards my goal.
I wrote them down. I carried these quotes with me constantly. I read them and meditated on them whenever I had the opportunity to. At work, home or at the gym (yup, I finally got myself to exercise, primarily by focusing on Arthur C. Clarke’s quote!), I focused on these three powerful quotes to help me FOCUS on what I wanted.
Because I changed my thought patterns, over time, I can honestly say I am 20 lbs lighter and a whole lot happier. I can honestly say I am 20 lbs lighter and a whole lot happier. Yes, I’ll be the first to admit that accomplishing the goal involved more than just thinking but it all began with my thoughts. The thoughts then permeated into my actions. (Now I need to FOCUS on maintaining that weight, so for me a whole new thought pattern begins.)
Here are the three steps again:
1. Decided to change your way of thinking about a behavior, making it easier for you to think about it. Phrase it in a simple way.
2. Choose a word to focus on to change that behavior for a period of time.
3. Find a minimum of three motivational or inspirational quotes related to that specific word that are powerful enough to change your current thought patterns the moment you read them. Meditate on them and repeat them, silently or out loud, every chance you get.
Be patient. Stick with it. Give it some time.
Why do you think companies offer a 30-day money back guarantee? They know that if you do something for 30 days it becomes a habit and you no longer need to return it! (Learned something, huh?) Give it time.
The first step to what you want to accomplish is changing your mind and the thought patterns and beliefs associated with your behavior. Thoughts are the precursor to action, meaning that thoughts occur before any action takes place. That’s what needs to be changed first. Your thoughts.
It worked for me and I hope this inspires and motivates you to achieve your goal.
All of us have days when we’re out of sorts. You just wish you were in a better mood. You’ve had days like that, haven’t you? Perhaps you tried to get yourself into a better state of mind but struggled to achieve it.
Sometimes we get stuck in our own emotional dumps and forget how easy it is to feel happier, so here are seven simple ways to lift your mood. Many people have found them useful. Some of them may surprise you!
1. Go for a walk.
Most people know that going for a short daily walk is one of the best forms of exercise. When you are feeling down it is even more beneficial. If you can, go into a natural environment with plants and birds. Can you think of such a setting not? What do you notice first? The different shades of greenery, the fresh smell of country air, the sounds of birds, or the sunlight shining through the trees? Make it real by taking a short stroll.
2. Listen to quality music.
Music can shift a listener’s state within moments. It’s effect can be nearly magical. Dig out that CD you haven’t listened to in ages or tune in your radio to something you’ve never listened to before.
3. Open yourself to discovering something new.
Read something (printed, not on line) different than what you would normally watch. There are a ton of different types of magazines can you get these days. Visit your local library or browse through a magazine rack. Pick up or buy a magazine you wouldn’t normally buy. You may discover something wonderful.
4. Find something to laugh at.
Laughter is one of the best ways to lift your spirits. Find a humorous book, or watch a comedy. Even better, try to learn a few new jokes and tell them to others.
5. Simple breathing meditation.
Breathing meditation is a great exercise that you can do anywhere. Simply allow yourself to sit comfortably with your back straight. Now close your eyes and become aware of the flow of air into and out of your nostrils. That’s all there is to it. Do this for 10-15 minutes. Notice how pleasantly surprised you can be at how you feel afterward.
6. Doodling for the fun of it.
Most people can remember when they were young and used to doodle for hours. Kids love drawing silly little pictures. Drawing is not just for kids or artists. Whoever you are get some pens, pencils, crayons or whatever you have and just draw for the fun of it. Notice how your state of mind shifts.
7. Think of others less fortunate.
The fact that you are reading this article suggests that you are probably much better off than most people on this planet. At times this may be hard to believe, but if you can read and have access to the internet, just those two things alone means you are better off than most people in the world. There are many human beings that barely have access to the basics of survival. There are people in lots of pain. Allow your compassion for them to grow.
These are all pretty simple. There’s nothing profound or life changing, but when all you need is a quick pick me up these may be just the thing you need. Putting simple ideas, methods, tools and techniques into action will help you achieve change more quick and easily–surprisingly so at time– than you imagine.
‘Once set, the final thing to do is to make our goals visible. Put our written down goals where we will see them everyday. Look at them often and surely success will follow, as day follows night.’
The above success principle has been praised by just about all those who have applied it. Those who do not apply it usually get left in the dust, goal-less. There are some who are able to bypass this principle and still enjoy great succcess, but they are few and far in between.
In my experience with goal setting, past and present, I find that in addition to writing them out, pictures of my goals and associated items, help me to visualize actually having them, just as if they are in a layaway catalogue, all I have to do is pay the price to pick them up. This allows me to think that it is just a matter of time until they arrive! This really helps to allay any negative vibes that may crop up during the adventure.
At the time, I was rarely successful at staying consistent and focusing steady on anything important. I mostly just played at life. I knew all the rules of success but was haphazard at applying them, no consistency. This does plague me from time to time.
That is until I got serious . . . 1987. That year I quit smoking, quit drinking, and quit being lazy! I dropped 60 lbs. in 3 months, and worked up to running 5 miles a day. I experienced the power of Focus! I wrote an article about how I made that happen. I called it, Set Your Mind To Win and you can read it at: http://www.realgoalgetter.com/articles/smith/set-your-mind.html . In it I explained some of what I did to achieve those goals. This article actually follows up on that one, with a little more detail, and in a different way.
That next year, 1988, I made a decision to take my wife to Hawaii. I remember it was a vacation trip though that I really wanted for my wife and I. It was her dream trip to Hawaii, she had never been there. So we planned two weeks in October that year. It all seems so long ago, actually it was. At the time of this writing it is 2004.
Back then, I didn’t have any of the the resources that I needed to take this trip, and I didn’t know how I was going to do it. I was flat broke. But I did know that I wanted it for my wife and I. This was a tremendous amount of cash for me to come up with in so short a time. For me this was nigh impossible! There were no past references in me to even think this was possible. I didn’t even have a savings account at the time.
Being in Sales and Supervision at the time, one of the procedures to make it easy for people to buy was to break down the necessary actions, payments etc. to the ridiculously simple, so they would believe it was not only possible but absolutely doable! I brainstormed all the things we wanted to have and do on our trip, all that it would cost, and totalled it up. I would need at least $8,000.00 in order to make it happen. I needed to break this down into timelines.
I pushed the negative self talk aside every time it came up. (And it came up often, believe me) I came up with ideas I needed to act on and I started to break them down into 5 smaller actions, and then into 5 smaller actions until I came up with a ridulously simple thing, that I could believe I could do and that I could do right there and then, and just waded into them one at a time.
I booked the trip in May, without having all my ducks in a row, heh, heh. I booked the time off at work and having told all my colleagues what I had planned, I couldn’t back out. Talk about a public commitment, and a commitment to my wife is not easily broken, so I pulled out all the stops to make this trip happen. I tightened my belt on a lot of things that I didn’t need and also worked my tail off to earn extra income so I could save some for the trip. I lived and breathed that trip every day.
I surrounded myself in my car, house, and office, with post cards, pictures, magazine articles, travel books, videos, sun tan lotion, even a fake grass skirt that I picked up in a yard sale and hung around my bathroom mirror.
I made an audio recording and listened to my own voice on tape of how I was making things happen, and I visualized (imagined) how successful I was at taking each of the actions necessary. I set out my intention. (Positive Self Talk in my car) This was weird stuff, believe me I felt weird at the beginning.
I talked about it all the time. It served it’s purpose though and kept my focus strong, and concentrated my power! I never let myself forget for a moment that I wanted this Hawaii trip badly, and that I was on the hook for this. I kept reminding myself in every way possible that this trip was important, I mean, almost life or death important.
Well, I made that trip happen just the way I wanted it, and my wife was ecstatic. One week on Oahu, and one week on Maui. We took 33 rolls of film in two weeks, a visual reminder of the fun and good times we had. My wife had her dream trip, and I had a real life reference that would change how I went after my goals forever.
Making this trip happen really made it clear to me that goal setting really works big time, as long as you keep your eye on the ball. Since then, I work on my goals regularly, always keeping them in mind. I have a dream collage of pictures framed on my wall, and I have a long list of ‘wishes’ that I have yet to take action on. I just have to pump up the volume from time to time.
I am not perfect by any stretch but I keep at it. After I met this challenge, I sure haven’t got any excuse for not having or doing something.The best reward I got from that experience was the feeling that I could achieve basically anything providing I stoked my desire high enough, and managed my thoughts and focus.
When you have one gargantuan goal, that by going after it, you automatically achieve all of your others, this helps to keep your focus concentrated, and your energy does not get dissipated by going in a lot of different directions. Just like Napoleon Hill writes about how powerful a ‘Magnificent Obsession’ can be.
Please do not take this as ‘bragging’ as my intention is only to demonstrate that anyone can do, have, or be whatever they want as long as you pay the price asked. Who in their right mind would brag about a small amount like $8,000.00 anyway in this day and age?
Let’s see some of the focus activities I used in doing this:
1. Write down my goal and review it frequently. Immerse myself in it.
2. Surround myself with associate items, pictures, smells, feels, and/or tastes.
3. Think as if it’s on layaway, it’s in the bank, and confidently pay the price.
4. Create future references by visualizing you have received them already.
5. Talk about them all the time, and record my own enthusiastic voice to listen to.
6. Control my focus by crowding out the negative, overwhelming it with positive.
7. Break down my actions to the ridiculously simple, be specific.
8. Commited to myself, my wife, and everyone I cared about. (built up importance)
9. Set my mind to ‘win’, there is no other option to consider.
10. Have faith that this will happen, use the peak to peek principle.
One focus to success. Build momentum in all things instead of distraction. It is all about focus. You can make this work for you too. The real question to ask yourself is this:
How can I take these 10 ‘focus’ strategies, use them as a ckecklist of sorts, apply them to my most important goal, make them work for me, and enjoy the process?
Well, how can you? And will you? You Can Do It!
Go for it!
Make denials and affirmations to suit your particular needs. Whatever you desire to do, affirm beforehand that you can do it, and that you will do it when the time for doing comes. Whatever disagreeable or difficult duty lies before you, deny failure, and affirm beforehand that you can and will do it, that already in your Mental World it is accomplished; then visualize yourself doing the thing calmly and without effort. Mentally see yourself dealing with a difficult or unpleasant matter, with calm dignity and ease. When the time for action arrives you will succeed.
Concentrate your whole attention upon the meditations. If you find your thoughts wandering through lack of concentrative power make use of the following denial and affirmation. First of all cleanse the mind by the denial of evil and calm and strengthen it by the affirmation of good. You have by so doing raised yourself into your perfect Mental World, breathing the pure air of perfect mental freedom. Now say, “Mind wandering cannot affect me. I am a perfect MIND, part of the great Universal Mind that is everywhere and works in and through everything. Therefore my mental powers are perfect. It was a mistake that made me think I could not concentrate; it was simply a delusion of the physical senses. Now I know that this could never be, because I am a perfect Mind gifted with God-like powers.” Now affirm as follows: “Now I know that I can concentrate on any subject I please. My potential powers are infinite, I have only to develop them, I have only to ‘try’ and I must succeed.” Working in this way you will develop tremendous powers of Concentration.
I send out my thoughts to all mankind and say: “Dear everybody, I love you.” Like the beams of a searchlight my mental vision sweeps over all the continents and islands of the world, and visualizes all peoples, sending out to them a great beam of Love and Blessedness. Then it takes in all sky and sun and earth and sea, and the sweet breath of heaven. It embraces all animals and flowers and loveliness, it sweeps through a thousand sunsets and a million dew-washed fragrant dawns back to the one Source of all life–again affirming, “I love you, I love you.” Then into my heart flows a great wave of divinest peace, a great inrush of the accumulated love-force of the invisible Universe, I become submerged in a sea of Infinite Blessedness. Thus in blessing others do I help to make the world a little better, and in return I am doubly blessed.
For this week’s visualizing exercise take six small articles and examine them very carefully one at a time. For instance, if one article is a lead pencil, look at it and see in what respects it differs from other lead pencils. You notice its color; its shape, either round, hexagon or oval; its point, well sharpened or otherwise; the maker’s name and trade-mark; what kind of lead, either BB, B or JIB; the name of the pencil itself; its condition, scratches on the surface of the polish; all these and many other points should be minutely noticed. Examine each article in turn and just as minutely. When you have examined them all, shut your eyes and visualize each article, and see every point and peculiarity in your mind’s eye, just as you did with your physical sight. Change the articles for new ones from day to day.
If you lack knowledge of a certain subject and desire to gain this knowledge, then tell your subliminal mind what it is that you require; it will then either supply direct the knowledge that you need or bring to your notice the very book or course of lessons that you require. Also in solving your problems your subliminal mind may bring a sentence to your notice, which, directly you read it, tells you that it is the answer to your riddle. The more you can quieten the senses and the objective mind and rely upon your subliminal mind the greater will be your wisdom and understanding.
In the letter I have sent you this week I speak of visualizing and affirming the success that you desire to demonstrate, fn the same way hold the picture of perfect health ever before your mind. Let it be a constant inspiration and source of radiant joy.
Successful people ask better questions- and as a result- they get better answers
Leadership is a highly unique form of human behavior that requires the integration of character, knowledge and experience. So what can you do if you step up and unleash your leadership potential? Change the world.
Your journey to unleashing your leadership potential begins with a great understanding of self. Discover your personality traits and how they relate to leadership. When we know ourselves, we can maximize our positive traits, and become aware of our weaker areas, which help us to achieve our leadership potential. Once you understand and know yourself, next you must hone your communication skills. These are not limited to your public speaking skills either. This includes your writing style and your body language. Your ability to communicate effectively enhances your ability to improve interpersonal relationships. Another important skill is to learn how to learn. Examine different teaching methods and learning styles to identify how you and those you may lead learn best. This skill will greatly enhance your ability to make decisions and give clear instructions.
An Exceptional Leader is one that recognizes the value of harnessing the skills and abilities of team members and leads them toward greater efficiency and effectiveness.
…And so leader is not a title and leadership is not something you are born into. Leadership is something you develop.
This is what Dr. Ken Blanchard, in his book “The Heart of A Leader” had to say about good leaders; “If you want to know why your people are not performing well, step up to the mirror and take a peek.
Are you constantly bombarded by thoughts of negativity? Plagued by feelings of insecurity? Do you see everything in a negative manner? The reason for this lies deep within your heart. You are what you mentally and spiritually eat. If a person drinks alchohol on a daily basis, odds are their body will be affected in some way. They may have liver issues, develop cancer or incur some other type of health problem directly related to the amount of alcohol they have consumed. In the same way, a person who constantly feeds themselves negative thoughts will simply turn into a negative person.
This is the time to go on a diet. A diet of positive attitude food. You have to literally stop feeding your mind negative things. Ask yourself is this thought negative or positive or negative? What do negative thoughts look like? Well, they start with can’t rather than can, no as opposed to yes, will and not won’t. The Bible which is the greatest self help book ever written, speaks about taking every thought captive. The problem in our society has become that our thoughts have taken us captive. We have begun to let our thoughts control us.
A great way to know what we are negative about is to ask those people who are closest to us. You can ask your spouse
or another person in your life who really knows you how they would rate your attitude on a scale of 1 to 10. 10 being super positive and 1 super negative. Ask this person to be totally honest with you. You will benefit from their honesty even if it causes you pain. Ask this person what it is that you specifically say that they perceive as negative. Write down what they say and look at the actual words. Now is the time to be honest with yourself. Those words are a reflection of what is inside you. They are who you are. The great thing is that you can change. It is as simple as making a choice to do so. You must decide to replace the thoughts of negativity with thoughts of positivity. Decide what words you will change the negative words on your paper to. Once you have done this, make an effort to insert these new positive thoughts in your mind. You will begin to notice a positive change taking place in your life. Your family, friends and co-workers will all notice it as well. They may not know what is different about you. But they will know that you are not the same person that you were.
The items which are causing negativity in your life could very well be the news, movies, constantly replaying tragedy in your mind and the list could go on. These things should be eliminated if you want your new mental health regimen to be a success. The news is very negative and does not help someone who is trying to rid their mind of such thoughts. When you are feeding yourself thoughts of death from a war or gunshot or car accident visually the outcome will be negative. I do believe there is a time to grieve over the death of a loved one. However, if a person constantly replays this negative event in their minds it can lead to depression. The person who has passed away is not coming back and we must close that chapter in our lives and move on to the next chapter. This is a difficult task which can only be done by making a decision to proceed with our own life, no matter how hard this may be.
You can do it. You can and will have a positive attitude, if you simply take the steps outlined above. You do not have to be what you were in the past. You can be different in the future. The choice is yours. I know you will make a positive one.
Goal setting is a powerful tool in leading whatever endeavor into its reaching its final and full potential.
But goal setting should effective enough than when this goal reaches its fulfillment, the goal itself becomes the fruit.
With the advent of the fever created by a book by Dan Brown, stories suddenly became the focal point of everything. Everything started in a story, they say. When God created the world; it is a story. The other side of this, i.e., evolution, is also a story. Jesus’ mission is also a story. And His supposed relationship with Mary Magdalene is a story in itself.
But in all of these, there is a singular tie that binds all of these elements. What is the goal of the Creator in creating the world? Is it a finished or an on-going goal? What was the original goal of Charles Darwin in setting forth the evolution theory? And Dan Brown, setting aside his writing talents, what was his real goal in coming out with such a book?
Everything else being equal, an effective goal setting strategy will spell the difference.
But how to do it?
1. Be clear. If you want a clear and tangible result, then set a clear and tangible goal. When people around you are sometimes confused of what you’re up to, what makes you think that what you really want is clear to you, even without a clear goal. Your whole being, all of your senses, should be one in achieving your goal.
2. Be positive. Goals, right from the start, should be positive. It’s common to see “tips” in almost everything to be set in two folds: the do’s, and the don’ts. You wont need the don’ts. It will only confuse your goal and is in violation of the first principle.
3. Prioritize. If you’re up to something bigger, and even a simple one, chances are that you must come up with a list of several goals. But be aware that multiple goal setting sometimes doesn’t work. You should have priorities. Put at the top of your list very few goals that are doable at the moment.
4. Classify your goals. Most probably, you really have one goal. But since you’re only one of the more than six billion souls inhabiting this planet, you will need to have several goals to help you achieve your ultimate goal. Thus, you will need to classify these several goals into (a) goals that will lead directly to the final goal, and (b) goals that will help in beating the odds that prevent you from realizing your final goal. Concentrate on the first type of classification.
5. Be positive. Believe in your goal. It is common to hear people saying keep your goal to an achievable level. Start with small things. Don’t harbor goals that are too big. But hey, this will limit your creativity right from the start. It’s true that you must have a list of your goals but it doesn’t mean that this couldn’t be changed. Even the U.S. Constitution has its amendments.
On this note, its good to touch on a little of this much abused set-realistic-goals mantra. If you would concentrate on this, you would soon realize that your goal is undoable because you’re bound to come across with a person with goals that contradicts your goal. When this happens, you only need to go back to your master list, what was the final goal? Then re-arrange the smaller goals that were supposed to lead you to the ultimate goal. Goal setting is more effective in this way.
It is true that goals that are too high need an equally huge investment in your part, but this is nevertheless doable. What you need actually is a little bit of rearrangement among your smaller goals.