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Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Emotional Hygiene

Life is frequently not easy, and we often encounter problems and difficulties that require us to pay attention to our own feelings.
Relationships, whether with family, spouses and partners, friends or even colleagues, can create emotional fallout that we need to take care of. In addition, if we want to maintain emotional health and balance; create as much happiness as possible in life; and maintain serenity or inner peace; our emotions require care.

There Is No "I" in Team - How To Create A Strong Team

Have you ever heard the statement that there is "no I in team". Usually you hear that from a football coach, or from a manager who is trying to motivate his employees to work harder. Today I will be doing something totally unconventional, I am talking about the "I" in teamwork. This is different from any speech you have heard on this topic before so I want you to listen closely because you just might learn something good. Whether your team is a sports team, a group of people at work, or the most important team your family, there is something you can learn from this.

3 Dangerous Negative Words

There have been countless articles, seminars, books and discussions about the value of maintaining a positive attitude, and most of us would agree that it is far more productive to maintain a positive approach and frame of mind than either being neutral or negative. However, in our everyday lives and activities, we often, nearly automatically revert to permitting negativity pervade and dominate our consciousness. One of the best and easiest ways of training ourselves to approach life from a can - do, as opposed to can't do perspective, is to begin by concentrating on eliminating these three negative words (or phrases) from our oral and written vocabulary: avoid saying problem or thinking about scenarios as problems; never begin one's process by saying that you'll try; and don't focus on why it can't be done.

The Law of Colour, Systems and Keeping a Diary

Research has shown that 60 percent of people still use book diaries, as opposed to modern technology to plan their day. If you use a book diary or find that you have trouble with your daily planning or managing your time, here's a trick you can use that will help you to be more organised and therefore much more productive.

Those who keep structured diaries are inevitably better at time management, note-taking and following up on discussion points.

Dealing With Loneliness

"Loneliness is the poverty of self."

-May Sarton

One of the toughest hurdles to overcome when a relationship ends is dealing with the gnawing loneliness that seems to take over your life and the fear that it will never end. These feelings are heightened when you are alone and it feels as if you are being haunted by them. Losing someone we love is one of the most difficult situations to deal with but, you can and you will get beyond this even though you may believe you won't.

Design Your Office in a Way That Makes Your Productive

Use a Colour that Helps Your Mood
You really have to think about the colour. It has a direct affect on the mood, which will affect your productivity levels. You may love the colour yellow and it is bright and cheerful, but too much can get you down and angry.
Blue is a great relaxing colour but can be too relaxing so you don't get the work done. Consider purples or greens to help get a mixture and find success.

Keep Photos to a Minimum
While you want photos of the people you care about, it can end up being too much. A cluttered desk is unproductive. Choose one or two photos.
You could also look at getting the digital photo frames so they change on a regular basis and you get the best of both worlds.
If you work from home or you travel, have the photos on your computer and avoid having too much on the walls.

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Small Steps, Big Changes

Small Steps, Big Changes

We all deal with clutter, believe it or not. Yes, even that friend with the spotless home. She doesn't appear to have clutter because she deals with clutter before it takes over her office, home  and life.

But what about the rest of us, with overflowing closets, ready-to-topple piles of magazines or bottles or spices spread over three cupboards?

The key is to tackle your decluttering step-by-step. A woman I know swears by the Wood Theory. It goes like this:

Facing a daunting load of wood that needed to be stored in her basement, she committed herself to toting one and only one  piece of wood to the basement every time she had to go to the basement for another reason (to unload her washer, for example).

A whole load of wood is daunting. But one piece of wood isn't. It's not even that heavy.


Wednesday, 24 July 2013

When you loss the weight from your mind, the weight on your body will take care of itself

People believe that losing weight and changing their body image is going to make them feel better. Unfortunately, this is far from the truth. Indeed, you may feel better for a while, but these are merely short-term results. How you feel about yourself on the inside is how you're going to present yourself on the outside. No diet, fancy clothing, new purse, makeup, hair style, car, new house, will change this.
Many people believe that they need to lose weight, become fit or eat a different way before they develop a healthier self-esteem. The problem is, though there are many things that we can do on the outside that will contribute to our well-being, none will have long-lasting benefits unless we develop a healthier self-image first. Self-image involves feeling good about yourself - your whole self - and not merely your physical appearance.
If you want to change something about yourself, then you have to go to the cause. If you feel you need to lose weight, then you must determine why you feel this way and where did it begin.
It is not the weight loss that I am proud of, it is the merging of my body; mind and spirit that I can honestly say made the difference.

Living Life To The Fullest

Living a life full of purpose, passion and happiness does not need to be as hard as we believe.

A lot of the time the reason why we're not living the life we want or dream off is because we are waiting for someone else to do something about it. We're not taking the responsibility ourselves to make the changes we need and to follow our true purpose, passion and desires. This has nothing to do with anyone else - it's all about YOU!

Having the gift of a happier, more satisfying life isn't easy and that is why so few people actually achieve all that they want out of life. In fact most people don't even achieve 1/3rd of what they want in life. People go through the daily routines, the daily grind expecting that one day it might be different.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Do You Feel Loved or Unloved?

Do you feel unloved? Do you know what would make you feel loved?

Ask yourself: Who do you feel loved or unloved by? Your partner? Your parents? Your children? Yourself? God?

FEELING LOVED OR UNLOVED BY YOURSELF AND/OR GOD

What does it mean to feel loved or unloved by yourself?

You will likely feel unloved by yourself when you abandon yourself by:

* Ignoring your feelings by staying in your head rather than being present in your body.
* Judging yourself, being negative, rather than being kind, caring and compassionate with yourself.
* Turning to various addictions to avoid feeling your feelings and taking responsibility for them.
* Making others responsible for your feelings, or taking responsibility for others' feelings.
* Not speaking up for yourself - allowing yourself to be treated badly by others.
* Not taking care of your health by eating badly, not exercising, not getting enough sleep.
* Not opening to learning with a spiritual source of love and truth.
* Not taking financial and organizational care of yourself.

When you are not loving yourself, you will also feel abandoned by God, and therefore feel unloved by God. And, when you are not loving yourself, you will also likely not feel loved by others, even if they are loving you.

You will feel loved by yourself when you:

* Are present with your feelings with an intent to learn about the information they are giving you and you desire to take responsibility for them.
* You treat yourself with kindness, gentleness, and compassion.
* You think in positive ways.
* You do not make others responsible for your feelings nor do you take responsibility for others' feelings.
* You speak your truth without blame or judgment.
* You take good care of your body/health.
* You provide financial and organizational safety for yourself.
* You have a devoted spiritual practice.

When you are loving yourself in these ways, you will also feel the love of Spirit within you and all around you.


Acquiring Good Presentation Skills For Your Career

It's ironical how most of us are always complaining of other people's inattentiveness and insensitivity when we talk, still when we get the chance to stand and speak, while others are obliged to sit quiet and listen (hint: audience during a presentation you are set to give), we are petrified by the thought. Good presentation skills are rarely inbuilt and you must work on your presentation skills if you are looking to excel in your professional life. Presentations must not be regarded as uninvited trouble; instead it must be deemed as a chance of a lifetime. Doesn't matter if you are looking to win respect of your staff, peers or managers; a good presentation can do the trick for you. The moment one gets to the podium, he/she has won some respect of the audience, since most of them are scared of speaking before public and anybody who volunteers to do so is sure to win some respect.

Plan, Prepare & Rehearse:

A big part of our fear of public speaking stems from the lack of preparation. It's really hard to stand up and deliver an effective presentation without any kind of preparation; however it's very rare that someone is asked to deliver a presentation, just like that. In most cases, you have got ample time to rehearse and prepare. The more you prepare, the more at ease you will be while giving the actual presentation. The first thing is to set down the main objective; a presentation without a clear objective (or with too many objectives) is a waste of time for both presenter and audience. You must be having a clear idea of your audience and their objectives as well.

Tips for Presentation:

No matter how good the presentation material and slides are, it is the speaker who can make the real difference. As earlier suggested, preparation is the key to a confidence presentation. However, preparing before the mirror and moving to the dice and looking at a room full of people is a different thing altogether. Still, there's nothing to be afraid of, start with giving a confident smile. Take a deep breath before starting and take brief pauses between the sentences. Make eye contact with all of your audience; however do not keep shifting your eyes all the time that will make you look nervous. You can think of taking some short course to polish your presentation skills, its worth your time and money.

Overcoming Everyday Addictions

Mention addictions and immediately sex, drugs and gambling come to mind. These are truly damaging addictions which can destroy lives in a short period of time. There are many lesser addictions which shape human development, health, and happiness that fly under the radar for the most part because they are accepted as normal in Western societies.

These 'habits' take years if not decades to take their toll on the human body and mind. It is usually not until a crisis of some nature, usually a debilitating or chronic sickness, that habits come under scrutiny as possible contributing factors in the acquiring of disease.

Habits for the most part are addictions in disguise because they are not illegal or severely frowned on. Habits are low-level addictions dressed up as acceptable social behaviors, and unfortunately most people will not consider something like their daily coffee habit as anything worse than a tasty way to wake up and stay awake at work, nor will they consider their bottle of wine drunk every night with dinner anything but a healthy habit because wine has been proven to have health benefits when consumed in moderation with meals.

Let's stop masquerading habits which are destructive to our health and wellbeing as anything but addictions. They are low-level addictions in some cases, but the harder it is to give up a habit, the more likely the habit is truly an addiction. Let's be painfully honest and look at addictions we all struggle with and see how we can shake free of their grip.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Alcohol Effects on the Body

Alcohol abuse can have a significant effect on the body, even if it occurred only on one occasion, such as with binge drinking. The long term effects of alcohol addiction can lead to serious health issues and be fatal. Although moderate alcohol use is considered safe, chronic and excessive and chronic use can be dangerous.

What is Moderate Alcohol Consumption?
Moderate alcohol consumption is considered to be no more than two drinks for men and one drink for women (non pregnant). Alcohol abuse can contribute to undernourishment and organ damage including liver disease, cirrhosis, hepatitis, as well as digestive problems. Other complications may include enlarged kidneys and kidney failure.

The Dangers of Alcohol Abuse in Pregnancy
Women who are pregnant and who have excessive alcohol use put their unborn babies at risk of being born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome which can cause lifelong physical deformities and mental deficiencies. Although there is no way of knowing how much alcohol is safe for pregnant women, research shows that alcohol consumption in moderation is safe, however it is best not to use alcohol while pregnant.


Is Your Net Working?

You are looking for a job. Who do you know? But, more importantly, who knows you? In the book, The Secrets of Savvy Networking, the author writes, "It's important to have know-how. It's equally important to have know-who." This statement was reinforced by Dorothy Hudson, a Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) enrollee who, after being with the same company for 19 years, was laid off. When forced to reenter the job market, Ms. Hudson said "my first rude awakening was it was no longer a matter of what you knew but who you knew".

This has become a reality for many older workers. They are quickly realizing that in today's world, the best way to get a job is through direct contact and personal relationships. Most jobs are never advertised. They are a part of the hidden job market. And, to tap into that market, you must know and understand the basis of networking. A few tips to help you enter the world of networking are:
Understand the term. The term "network" frightens many job seekers- young and old. Some view it as "using" people. Networking isn't about using people; it's about making contacts and building relationships. When you understand the importance of networking, even in everyday life, it should come as naturally to you as walking.

Give back. Reciprocity or giving back is the cornerstone of networking. This doesn't mean that you must give something back to the person who gave you the lead or referral. It does mean, however, giving to others; and expecting nothing in return. Think of it as "paying it forward".
Expand your circle. Step outside of your comfort zone. Meet some new people. When you step outside of your comfort zone, you open yourself up to new experiences, new learning opportunities, and new possibilities. When you meet and connect with a new person, follow up within 48 hours, with a "nice to have met you" phone call, email, or short note. And, periodically, keep in touch.

Tell everyone. Talk about your job search to anyone who will listen. Jane, for example, was out of work for 8 months before she let any of her friends know. What got in the way? Ego and pride. Don't let your pride and ego stand in the way of your success. Tell anyone who will listen what you are looking for. Tell your neighbors, church members, family members, and friends. Let complete strangers know that you are looking for a job. And, remind them repeatedly.

Finally, be prepared. Know what you are looking for and jump at any opportunity to sell yourself. People hire people they know.

Make Fear Your Driving Force To Success

Everyone experiences fear. But how we deal with it is a very personal thing. Jumping in a pool of sharks would strike fear in most people. Then again there are the percentage of daredevils that find the courage to take the plunge and swim with the amazing beasts.
Risky? Yes!
Stupid? That is a personal opinion by an individual.
The point is, there is a relative amount of fear involved in the action, it is how you deal with the fear that results in the action taken.
Fear can be a crippling thing to many people. No matter how much they want to do something, they just can't take the first step. It's a common problem.
What you need to do is look at fear from a different angle. Use it as a weapon to your success. Rather than a weapon of your own defeat.
Anything new or different can be scary. That's normal. But if the fear of change takes hold and prevents us from moving forward, we can find ourselves stuck in one place.
The name of this 'place' is the 'comfort zone'.
If you want more for your life, if you are reading this because you're looking for self-improvement and personal development then it's time to get out of that comfort zone.

How to Grow Out of Your Comfort Zone

How many days a week, a month, a year, do we enter the comfort zone? What is the comfort zone you ask? The comfort zone is the everyday habits that we perform automatically to control our thinking, our actions and our lives.

We ride to work every day on the same route we eat breakfast with the same food at the same place. We wake up at the same time and drive to work the same way every day. We watch TV every night with the same shows. This comfort zone run's our lives by directing the same actions and thoughts. The action of doing the same thing day after day is a no brainer. No really it creates zero brain growth. As humans we like things comfortable and easy. In fact, the less thinking the better is kind of pre-wired. Most people try to avoid moving out of their comfort zone.

But here's the thing, if we want to become more successful we must force ourselves out of the comfort zone. We need to seek out stimulating, insightful information and activities. We need to have things that grow our brains and that will help us to analyze and solve challenges. When you go outside your comfort zone it doesn't have to be monumental. It can be a simple change in our daily lives to begin with. The key is to start stepping out and keeping stepping out to grow.

There are many people in history that applied these concepts. One of the most famous and successful people who used this concept was Albert Einstein. Did you know that when science looked at his brain he had connections between both the left and the right side of his brain? This is very unusual for the average brain but the key to this was that he was always looking at ways to push himself out of his comfort zone.

Optimal brain function is not something we are born with, it is how we choose to use our brains that make the difference. How do we grow our brains? One way is to branch out and do something different in the evening or on the weekend. Explore a new area or a new book. Take up painting if you are analytical. Wake up at a different time and take a different route to work. Expand the mind past the ordinary to create new connections. When you move beyond the normal you will increase the brain synopsis. Who knew vacations could be so great, just make sure it's a place you have never been.

Brain Exercises and How They Help Your Memory

Memory can be defined as our brain's ability to process 'the stored information' that we have learned in the past. It may sound like a very simple process but memory is a very complex procedure and whenever we try to remember things, we are activating multiple parts of the brain.

A minor amount of memory will be lost by age but this does not mean that it can affect day-to-day function. Poor nutrition, no physical activity, and a lack of brain stimulation are the most common reasons for memory lapses in many people. If you consume nutritious foods which are great for your brain, maintain good physical health, and engage in mentally stimulating activities, you can significantly improve your ability to memorize and recall details.

As a matter of fact, there are many workout techniques for your brain:

Classical Music: Music has a great role to play in stimulating our brain and it is believed that listening to music for a couple of hours each week will aid with memory and overall brain function.

Reading: Reading is a great way to gather more information and engage your mind. People who read on a regular basis usually have greater memory power and are more adept at recalling information and score higher on reading comprehension.

Pay Attention: Paying attention is very important in acquiring the details you want to remember later. If you do not pay proper attention to something, the information will not be encoded adequately into your brain. It is believed that it takes only less than 10 seconds to focus and store information into the brain.

Visual Enhancements: Aesthetics in your home or office can improve your brain's visual skills. We know that certain colors and methods of lighting are more conducive to learning and studying. Fixing a new fish tank or painting the walls in interesting colors are two simple examples on how to improve the knowledge acquisition ability of brain. Flower vases as well as wall paintings are other examples.

Respiratory Exercises: Respiratory workouts are a great way to improve the oxygen delivery to the brain. The brain has an extraordinary demand for oxygen and the quest to enhance memory can't be considered complete without performing breathing exercises.

Stress Management: Stress can have a huge impact on memory. The more stressed and anxious you are, the more difficult it is to both acquire and recall information. Practicing stress-reduction techniques can pay great dividends for your memory.

Sleep Habits: Good sleep hygiene is vital to a well-functioning brain. Lack of sleep or poor sleep habits will adversely affect your memorizing abilities.

Board Games: Board games such as chess, checkers, solitaire and Sudoku are known for their ability to provide challenges to the brain. Make it a habit to play games on a regular basis.

These exercises and activities are very simple to do and most are inexpensive and easy to implement. Make an effort to engage in these activities on a regular basis and your brain will thank you for it.

Trust Is a Two Way Street

Trust, Webster's dictionary defines it as assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something. It is a value that is earned but is extremely important to who we are and creating success in our careers and our lives. Trust, we hear this word and it is tied to so many emotions. Trust is an understanding and an agreement between people. But building trust is a two way street. Trust is created by believing in others and showing vulnerability. Being the first to let go of control, just as I trusted my Grandfather, he also trusted in me by letting go.
When looking at trust you must be willing to let go of information. This will help to create a sense of trust and any doubts that people may have. Self-disclosure is important to the building of trust and letting others know what you stand for, what your values are, what you want and what you will or will not to do. This doesn't mean that everyone will feel comfortable with your position but this will bring about an understanding of who you are and ultimately bring a sense of trust to the relationship in the workplace or in our personal lives. When building trust with others it is truly an understanding of who you are and where you are coming from. This includes asking for help when needed and providing help and understanding when others need it.
Trust can't be forced, however. If someone is bent on misunderstanding others and refuses to perceive them as well-intentioned or competent, there is little that you can do to change this. Trust takes time and reluctance is a natural reaction in the beginning. Give them time, be open and honest and create a sense of security. Be true to your word and open with your actions. Trust is a two way street and it always starts with you.


Thursday, 18 July 2013

The Best Ways To Lose Weight With The Law of Attraction!

As you are well aware that the law of attraction states that like attracts like. This implies that whatever you are feeling and thinking on a subconscious level, you will attract that. Begin to analyze your beliefs about physical fitness and being obese if you are obese and wish to get in shape.
These are the concerns you might be having:
1. Is it an uphill task to lose weight and get into shape?
2. Does being in shape means calorie counting, starving yourself for food or denial of something you like the most?
3. When thinking about slimming down now, do memories of previous failures surround your mind?
4. When considering workout, does it seem uninteresting or a duty to do?
5. Do you wish to lose weight rapidly or are you thinking about lifestyle changes that will keep the weight off?
6. Do you truly think that I can do this with the law of attraction?
The reality is that it took you a long time to reach where you are today as it didn't happen overnight. You had experienced many thoughts and imaginations for a long time that resulted in yourself being overweight. You have developed a particular mindset and weight gain is simply a sign of this belief.
By using the law of attraction, you will start to change those routines and practices and the above concerns will help you in identifying precisely how you feel about losing weight. Many people wish to lose weight rapidly with tablets, extreme diet plans and workout programs and although these things could take the weight off, it is harder to keep it off for ever, since an essential thing has not been taken care of which is - Your belief.
By comprehending and making use of the law of attraction, you start to condition your mind to immediately make the right choices for making healthy changes in your everyday life that could result in a physique you have dreamed since long. Below are some easy steps in making use of the law of attraction to lose weight:
1. Get your photo when you were of an ideal weight or a photo of somebody who is having the ideal shape.
2. Get a pair of trousers that are 3 sizes bigger than your size.
3. Chant an affirmation like "I'm looking my best " or " I'm in great shape ".
In order to lose weight, you can also use the law of attraction for half an hour or so everyday wearing oversized clothes to help with the feeling of being slimmer. While doing that, you look at the ideal weight photograph and get involved in the feeling of being that which you are now. Then keep stating the affirmation you have developed for yourself. You can state it aloud or in your heart. You will find this entertaining and if you feel that you are doing it as a duty, then you are not doing it correctly. It could however be difficult to get into the feeling of being in shape if throughout your life, it has been the opposite. Practice will be very helpful here and try your best to feel great, slim and anything you wish to become throughout the 30 to 60 minutes every single day.
Do not expect outcomes overnight, however if you stick to your everyday program, you will start to unconsciously make the right choices in your day-to-day life that will help you get in the shape you want. Don't forget that affirmations alone will not help but to accomplish your health goals, it is important to also get into the habit of eating healthy food, exercising on a regular basis and having proper rest as well.
With the law of attraction, you will eventually discover that it is possible to look for healthy food choices and doing workouts for a better health and with continued devotion and determination, you will be among those people who have made use of this law to get into an ideal shape.

Building Character And Leadership

If you know how to build character and leadership, you're guaranteed a lifetime of success. Of course, getting there isn't always as easy as it seems. You have to put in a certain amount of effort to really get good results.

Are you ready to learn how to build character and leadership? Read on!

Step 1: Tenacity is the key.

When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. It's a little cliche, I know, but it's also true. If you're really serious about developing yourself as a leader, then you need to be prepared to face all obstacles that come your way.

If you used to panic whenever a deadline looms near, you need to get a grip on yourself and act like the fearless leader you aspire to be.

Step 2: Lead by example.

The best leaders are those who lead by example. Before you start telling your team what to do, you must first be able to abide by your rules yourself!

Even if you're not yet a leader, you can still lead by example. Let's say your co-workers always slack off at work, don't copy them and make trouble for your company. Instead, be the one who diligently works your shift.

Step 3: Attend personal development seminars.

There's always room for improvement. If you have an opportunity to attend a leadership seminar or a personality development training, do so. Don't be content with who you are right now, but continue growing!

If there are no useful seminars coming your way, drop by the library or book store after work and browse through self-help books on how to build character and leadership. Who knows just what gems you might find between pages?

Step 4: Make good on promises.

Whether it's taking your little sister to the zoo or arranging a meeting between two colleagues, you must deliver on your commitments.

Don't allow yourself to be bogged down by excuses such as," I don't have time to do it today. I'll do it next week." Learning how to build character and leadership involves taking all promises - big or small - seriously.

Step 5:
Always be prepared.

Nobody wants to be caught with his pants down. If you really want to be the kind of person that leaders are made of, then you should make it a habit to be prepared for anything.

Consider the worst-case and best-case scenarios before making a decision or before you even step out of your house! Don't just rely on hearsay and on what your subordinates have come up with either. Be prepared yourself.

Learning how to build character and leadership is achievable as long as you set your mind to it. Nothing is impossible!

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Influencing Is The Key

Just like men, women also need to have exceptional qualities in order to be good at business. Amongst the qualities women need to have, being able to influence people is one of them. Here's 5 tips on how women can influence those people in their lives:

1. Do things for other people: One of the easiest ways through which you can influence others is to do something for them. If you are looking to do business with someone for example, take them out for a meal or for a cup of coffee. However do not talk about business unless your client does so. Instead, indulge in small talk, ask some questions and listen to what the other person has to say. Get to know them as a person first. This will help in building trust and the relationship between you and your colleague will certainly increase.

2. Treat them like your friends (but not too casual!): Think of your customers as being your friends. Try to help improve their lives without bringing up the topic of the product which you are selling. Behave in a way they would want to reciprocate, not because they feel they are obliged. No one likes to do things by being forced or obligated. The best way is to always treat your customer respectfully and like a friend.

3. Be Sensitive: Be someone to whom people feel they can relate to and open up to. Be aware of other people's needs and be concerned about them. The more empathetic you are, the more you will be able to influence people in the right way. It will give the impression you are approachable and trustworthy.

4. Be polite and say thank you: Take advantage of any opportunity which you may get to do nice things for someone. Be kind and do things for others so that they will learn to appreciate you more. Say thank you to people when appropriate, remember special occasions and speak to them about things that interest them. By building a rapport, it is more likely you will be in a position to influence them after some time.

5. Give rather than get: Giving others something is valued much more than getting something from them. People are much more honored and valued by their peers if they give something to the society and individuals, rather than only taking things from them. When you meet someone, try doing something nice for them, rather than anticipating them to do something. Make the first gesture; it will be to your benefit.

Influencing others is not something which everyone is comfortable or capable of doing but with practice, and when the right strategy and right behavior is adopted, it is certainly quite possible. Women are certainly capable of influencing others and doing great business. It is all a matter of making use of the right strategy and saying the right thing at the right time. Influencing is certainly the key for succeeding. Done with the right intent and working with the right people, influencing can be a very enjoyable conversation.

Coping With Anger: How to Deal

When it comes to coping with anger, there are people who know how to do it in healthy ways and those who have problems managing their anger and expressing it appropriately.
Instead of lashing out, becoming physically violent or intimidating those who have caused your anger, take a step back and allow the heat of the moment to pass. When you do this, your anger will be easier to manage, and you won't end up in a situation that has gone from bad to worse.
Here are a few tips on how to deal with your anger when it seems impossible to manage.
First, acknowledge that you are angry.
This might sound pretty basic, but you'd be surprised at how quickly people will try to deny that they're angry. Recognize the trigger that sets off your anger. Most people, if they stop and reflect on their anger, will be able to see it coming.
You know better than anyone what makes you mad. When you can recognize the things that cause your stress reflex to bend towards this angry side of your emotional makeup, you will be better prepared to deal with it.
Pay attention to how others are coping with anger.
Everyone is different, and we all have different ways of expressing ourselves. If you know you have a problem with anger, make a study of those around you.
Watch how the people in your life react to things and situations that would completely set you off on an angry spiral. Make some mental notes about what they do and say and see if you can incorporate any of those tools into your own anger toolbox.
Teach yourself flexibility.
Almost everyone with an anger problem has one thing in common: they react instead of responding.
When whatever trigger sets you off, there is probably an instant and immediate angry reaction. Try to fight against this. Instead of reacting right away, gather all of the information you can and learn to be flexible.
You cannot control everything, as much as you might like to. When something happens that makes you angry, instead of falling back on your comfortable reaction, respond by thinking it through and looking for other acceptable solutions.
Set your expectations a little lower.
Part of being flexible is being okay with compromise or settling for almost everything you wanted. A major part of coping with anger is knowing that the world will not end just because something has not gone your way.
Many people get angry because they feel threatened. Teach yourself to welcome several different outcomes, instead of being emotionally tied to just one.
A huge trigger for anger can be expecting one thing but getting another. If you're ready for almost anything, you'll have less reasons to be angry.
Work on communication.
People generally do not enjoy communicating with angry people. If everyone in your life is afraid of your reaction, they are going to hesitate to talk to you openly. It's okay to be assertive and clear about what you want.
Just try not to be domineering. Angry people can be bullies, and you probably don't want that reputation.
Try to be better about forgiveness and compassion.
You will find it harder to be angry when you forgive people for what makes you angry. Feelings of resentment almost always lead to anger, so work through those and get rid of them as quickly as you can.
This can be hard, even for people who do not have a problem with anger. Holding onto grudges is not going to move you forward, however. It's going to keep you exactly where you are; angry and frustrated.
Finally, don't be afraid to get help.
There are many good therapists and behavioral health specialists who are trained in anger management. Talking to a counselor about your unhealthy behavior can help you cope with your anger.
You might also benefit from group therapy or support groups for people with anger. When you have trouble managing it yourself, listening to other people share their stories can help you feel less alone in your struggle.
Anger can lead to stress and depression, which will have a terrible impact on your overall physical and mental health. If you have a problem with anger, do what you can to manage it.
Have an honest conversation with yourself about your behavior and how you want to change it, then talk to a professional who can help you. Coping with anger is not something you need to do alone.

Go on, Be Bold, Create!

"You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have." - Maya Angelou

I love the simple truth of this quote. Go on, read it again and then breathe in and breathe out.

We seem to have gotten to a place in our society where even small children, by the age of six or seven, have absorbed beliefs about what they are "good at" and what they are "bad at". And as for us adults, well my guess is that for many of you the words; "draw me a picture", "sing me a song", or "get up and dance" are some of the most frightening phrases you could imagine hearing.
So, here's a newsflash for us all:
Creative expression is not about being an expert! It's not about getting it right, being the best, being a professional or making it your life's work.
Creative expression is about being in your body, releasing tension, being completely yourself, allowing something unexpected to appear or happen, having fun and being absolutely, completely in the present moment.
There's something else here too. Know that spreading your wings and trying forms of creative expression that are out of your comfort zone can be very therapeutic.
I love expressing myself through the written word and this comes quite naturally for me. However, I also love singing, dancing, baking and getting things organised because I've noticed how all these different activities bring me pleasure and release in very different ways.
We can all play with creative expression and enjoy the benefits.
Make sure you have some basic tools close at hand like music, paper, crayons or coloured pencils. Then just follow your daily creative urges and allow the process of being caught up in a moment of creation be far more important than the end result.
Be three years old again! Can you remember how that felt?


Ways to Stay Organized

We're almost halfway through the year and odds are your New Year's resolutions are a distant memory - or maybe you've forgotten them completely! Getting organized is one of the most common resolutions, so if you're one of the many who have abandoned your "get organized" resolve, it may time to stop trying harder and start trying differently. Top findings that will help you:
  1. Identify crucial moments. We've all had days where our best intentions aren't enough to keep us on track with maintaining our organizing systems. Maybe you were too tired to put your dirty clothes in the hamper, or you needed to hurry home from work and didn't get the paperwork filed. The authors suggest that you identify specific "crucial moments" where you may have gotten derailed, and write them down. By writing them down, you'll be more aware of your behavior and can look for patterns. Being aware of these moments will enable you to control them better in the future.
  2. Create your vital behaviors. Once you've identified your crucial moments, you can create rules of behavior to follow when faced with a crucial moment. As the authors point out, "often, a vital behavior is the reverse of what failure looks like in the crucial moment." If you're not getting your dirty clothes in the hamper, put them there; if you're not getting papers filed, file them. Easier said than done, right? On to item 3.
  3. Love what you hate. The idea here is that you adjust your world so that it supports and motivates you in following your vital behaviors. You may need to find a way to make putting the clothes in the hamper fun; for example, put a basketball hoop over the hamper and make baskets with your dirty clothes. Make filing more enjoyable by playing music while you file. Find a way to get beyond the aspects of the task that you don't enjoy.
  4. Visit your default future. Create a vivid and believable image of what your future will look like if you don't follow your vital behaviors. Will your bedroom floor be covered with an embarrassing mountain of dirty clothes? Maybe your office will be enveloped by gargantuan piles of unfiled paperwork and you'll spend hours searching for lost documents. You can draw on these images during those crucial moments of temptation.
  5. Turn accomplices into friends. Ask people who might otherwise have sabotaged your efforts to stay organized to help you succeed at your new behaviors. Rather than family members enabling your hamper-less ways, ask them to remind and support you in getting your dirty clothes into the hamper each day. Maybe you can ask a work colleague to remind you 15 minutes before you leave work each day to file all loose paper.
Good luck as you change your default future into one of simplicity, harmony and freedom.

Changing Your Life By Changing Your Attitude To Gratitude

Can you bring positive changing to your life by changing your thoughts towards gratitude? It could be said that the thoughts that you think on a regular basis might be having a powerful effect on your life. Indeed the thoughts that you think could in-fact effect the things that are happening in your life on a daily basis. So can you generate meaningful effects in your life by having increased thoughts of gratitude?

The Effect of Continual Repetition
The way that a young human will learn to acquire new skills could be said to be by practicing the new skill a number of times until, the new habit is established. This idea of repetition could be said to be one of the most effective methods of mastering a new skill. So it could be useful to apply this concept in-order to change your life by changing your attitude to gratitude. By looking at life through the eyes of gratitude could allow you to see life in new ways. You could find that many of the basic things that might have been taken for granted, could in-fact be some of the greatest blessings that you currently have in your life. One sad fact in life is that many people do not appreciate the small important gifts that they have, for example the ability to read this. It is very sad to reach the stage of losing a valuable ability before you value and appreciate it. So it could be very useful to consciously think about the many good things that you have in your life.

Attitude to Gratitude
If you look at the idea of focusing your daily thoughts on thoughts of gratitude, perhaps this can generate new ways for you to see the world and the life that you live. A new outlook may allow you to create greater and better feelings within your mind. And if you are creating better feelings within your mind this may in-fact lead to better feelings within your body. It could be argued that the thoughts that you think may have a direct effect on the conditions within your body. It could be said that stress is one of the main causes of illness, and stress could be said to be a result of the thoughts that you are thinking. So by the same argument, thoughts of gratitude may be the way that you can generate positive effects in your body. So the idea of having daily thoughts of gratitude could be something of great benefit to you.

Feeling Guilty? How to Finally Let It Go

If you have ever experienced feeling guilty, then you realize that it can be quite debilitating, burdensome, and stressful.
It's like the weight of the world is on your shoulders and you can't seem to shrug it off and, if you can, it only lasts temporarily and then the heavy thoughts and feelings return.
You may find yourself tossing and turning at night and losing sleep over what troubles you.
Some people feel so remorseful that it last a lifetime.
You may feel that if you let go of the guilt then you aren't taking responsibility for that about which you feel guilty.
Perhaps you don't believe you can forgive yourself or don't know how. You can learn to though, one step at a time.
If what has occurred involves another person, and you want their forgiveness, this may or may not happen. Remember, you need to forgive yourself whether the other person is able to forgive or not forgive you.
Forgiving doesn't mean forgetting; it means moving forward from that which is continuing to hurt you.
On some level you may believe that feeling guilty is your penance for how how you feel or what occurred.
You may find you are angry at yourself; this is quite a common feeling.
"Guilt is anger directed at ourselves - at what we did or did not do. Resentment is anger directed at others - at what they did or did not do." Peter McWilliams
It might feel like you can't seem to lift this weight of guilt off your shoulders, but oh, you can.
When I did body-psychotherapy with clients, and now coaching, the two places most people hold guilt in their bodies is in their necks and shoulders. The heart is often affected as well.
Guilt has a heaviness to it and can be exhausting.
It may feel like it's yours and yours alone to carry. It doesn't have to be that way though.
There are ways you can begin to heal, forgive yourself, and let the guilt go.
You can share with someone why you are feeling guilty. You might be afraid that if you tell a person how you feel they might judge you, or not forgive you. Choose a friend, coach, counsellor, mentor, who you believe is non-judgmental.
Write down how you are feeling. Writing and talking about things are very healing. Instead of keeping everything all bottled up, you are opening up to heal.
Ask yourself, "Why am I holding onto this guilt?"
Ask yourself, "When do I want to let this feeling go?" Today?
Ask yourself, "What do I need to do to let go of this?" Maybe it's writing a letter, talking to someone, meditating upon it, doing a ceremony around it, doing visualization, body-work, etc.
"Ask yourself, "Do I need to forgive myself?" Easier said than done? Sometimes yes. This is an important and necessary step to moving through the guilt, letting it go, and then healing.
Learn from what has occurred. For some people it takes more than one time for them to learn the same lesson. What's key when something occurs where you feel guilty is to learn from it. What if anything could you do differently now?
Some feelings of remorse are easier to let go of than others. What's important is recognizing when you are feeling guilty, then proceeding to do something about it.
Don't allow guilt to weigh you down any longer. Begin to lighten the load by doing something about it.
Today, will you choose to let go of your guilt?
Use these techniques to assist you in letting go of guilt so you can get back to living and enjoying more of life.

Monday, 15 July 2013

The Simple, Complicated Thing

Your thoughts and feelings really DO create your experience in life, it's just that there are a number of complicating factors that get in the way of our realizing this truth.
What does that mean? It means there is a lot of trial and error along the path of getting something right. It means that all things are difficult before they are easy. It means there is divine wisdom, intelligence, and SIMPLICITY that emerges through the process of complexity. It means in the beginning there are infinite choices and possibilities, and in the end there is only one.
Through the process of engaging some creative endeavor we learn what works and what doesn't. And over time, through experience, we can come to see the essence of something; its essential simplicity. Life is like this.
In the beginning there are so many voices, choices, options, and paths; some conscious, some unconscious, many conflicting. We are launched into this life and boy can it look complicated! Then, through a process of trial and error, we discover what works and what doesn't, for us in our life. Our basic instinctual nature leads us towards things we like, and away from things we don't like, towards things that work, and away from things that don't.
In my life I have come to realize, know, and experience that my thoughts and feelings create my experience in life. Can it be that simple? Well, yes, and no. Yes, because this IS how it works. No, because there are so many complicating factors that hide this simple truth, that make it look otherwise than it is. Let's look at a few of the most significant ones.
You might say: If my thoughts and feelings create my experience in life, then why when I think and feel that I have $1 million dollars, does it not appear? Well, it does appear - OVER TIME. Time is one of the complicating factors. Often we just aren't ready to experience something we've asked for; more growth and preparation are necessary for us to truly have it. Then, when we finally get what we asked for, we forgot that we even asked for it! We lose the link to the initial request, desire, and intention - to our thoughts and feelings that started the creative cascade. And once again it looks as if our thoughts and feelings are not creating our reality.
Which leads us to the second complicating factor: what you are thinking and feeling doesn't typically instantly appear in your life (although it can). Instead you are shown the steps for creating it. Going back to our example, if you authentically think and feel your ownership of $1 million dollars, you'll be shown the steps - typically just the next one - towards its creation. Once you ask for something, and think and feel its existence in your life, PAY ATTENTION. What typically show up next are the path and steps that will create and bring this experience into your life.
And finally, there is the big kahuna of complicating factors, our SUBCONSCIOUS beliefs. By definition we're unconscious of these beliefs in our subconscious, hence they can "get in the way" of our conscious creative thoughts and feelings - AND WE DON'T EVEN KNOW IT. This can be very frustrating and causes most people to give up on their dreams, on their creative path.
You see, our thoughts and feelings ARE creating our reality, it's just that the ones doing the creating are the ones lodged in our subconscious - the ones we have been accepting and reaffirming as true about ourselves since childhood. In the beginning, and until you transform them, the beliefs established early in life will usually be more powerful than the ones you chose yesterday.
Transforming these subconscious limiting beliefs is the MOST IMPORTANT work you can do, and is typically the work that no one wants to do; it can be scary, feel uncomfortable and unpleasant, and be confusing and hard to do. However, it is the most powerful, valuable, and essential work for anyone wanting to create the life of their dreams. And it's totally doable, especially with a guide or a coach who has the tools and experience.
So you see, your thoughts and feelings really DO create your experience in life, it's just that there are a number of complicating factors that get in the way of our realizing this truth. These complicating factors are not insurmountable;
Try this:
It's easy to identify your subconscious limiting beliefs. If you want to know what thoughts and feelings are currently creating your life's experience, try this:
1) Identify something you really want, but do not currently have. It can be anything. Write it down on the top of a piece of paper.
2) Next, ask yourself why you don't have it? Listen carefully to all that comes up and write them down on the same sheet of paper. Take a look at each one. As real and justified as these things may seem, they are the beliefs you have about yourself, your life, and perhaps life in general, that are keeping you from having that thing that you want.
If you really want to have and experience whatever you wrote down in number 1 (and you CAN have it), then examining and transforming the beliefs (reasons, excuses, etc.) that came up in #2 is an essential step on your path.


Finding Your Gift Through Your Worst Weakness

So you're determined THIS year to hit the mark, make that goal, turn that resolution into reality! And then you remember all the reasons why you didn't do it in years ago. It mostly had to do with something you thought you couldn't overcome... an innate "weakness" of sorts... something you were "just born with (or without). How can I possibly achieve that goal if I simply don't have the talent, the gift, or the strength? And yet some of us don't even know where to look for our own talents. We are unconscious to them, having lived so long thinking... believing that we are just a certain way.
Perhaps you'd love to teach a class but being shy you can't imagine standing up in front of strangers or worse yet, people you know to demonstrate a skill. Yet, this shyness makes you empathetic to certain small children or those who are uncomfortable in front of an audience. You could actually teach how to get past the shyness!
Perhaps you avoid conflict at all costs and yet this trait would be a great balance to being on a committee for your town improvements. You would be the sound of reason.
Perhaps you're stubborn and quick to anger-though this makes you an excellent defender of others. Pick a trait you struggle with, or one you see as a weakness or fault, and find the gift in it. And then pledge to yourself what you will do with it this year.
We teach what we most need to learn! This actually made me laugh, because I know, that my greatest weaknesses are also the key to my greatest strengths.
I have a vivid imagination, which lets me think outside the box, at the same time, I can drift off sometimes. I choose to use it every day, to propel me toward what I want, looking for new ways to achieve, and learned that it is okay, at times to let it go and just spend a few moments adrift.
Another weakness is that I am very emotional. On the other hand I use that characteristic to listen more deeply to people and find what is really under what they're saying. It has helped me be a better life coach and Certified Anger Management Specialist II. I think by being emotional, and sensitive, I can understand people better.
Sometimes my long fuse which would normally be looked at as an asset can be my demise because I put up with certain behaviors from others too long thinking "they're going to understand it sooner or later," when if I stopped and explained to them what is bothering me it would save both of us time and excessive energy. I choose, however, to look at it as a part of my tenacious nature which also manifests in unwavering dedication. But, yes, I can sometimes pursue a goal long after I should have let it pass.
Then there's the "problem" with my brain! I can be fairly organized but it's as if my brain doesn't keep all of its data. I'll file something away, organize my office or car and then think... "where on earth did I put the flyers I need for this week?" My brain is saying "Well, it's done, so no need to remember it." On the other hand that can be a good thing because I don't get hung up on minutiae.
This article is to frame a perceived weakness as a strength. When you look at what you think is a weakness, also look to its opposite to see where it could be utilized. We have to re-think our way out of the self-contained box.
Because we have been programmed to believe something about ourselves does not necessarily make it true (whether that's a good thing or not). We need to remind ourselves of how many of our thoughts have become unconscious beliefs and whole belief systems about who we are or rather think we are!
It reminds me of my need to WAKE UP. It reminds me of the need to love and accept myself, regardless of anything. It's a reminder that a person can just do the best they can do, and that in the long run not very much is as important as we thought it was.
I once knew a fellow life coach who bought herself an emerald ring. This ring had a real significance to it. It was flawed. She purposely bought it to remind herself of the fact that some of her flaws just might turn out to be some of her greatest assets.
When you start making those promises to yourself, or wondering what you did with those resolutions regarding what you're going to change about yourself... may I make a suggestion that you reconsider those "flaws" and see how valuable they really can be? You just might be doing yourself and the world a favor.

Folding in Mindfulness

10 Helpful Tips for Keeping a Focus on Mindfulness and Returning to Awareness Throughout Your Busy Day.
  1. Periodically stop throughout the day and bring awareness to what you are currently doing.

  2. If you find yourself stressed or stirred up, bring attention to your body and notice where you are holding the emotion. Is it in your stomach, shoulders, upper abdomen? What does it feel like? Tension? A hot ball? Bring attention to your breathing and notice if you are holding your breath or breathing shallowly.

  3. How can you bring your awareness to eating mindfully? Bring attention to what you are eating. Slow down and really tasting your food. Do nothing but eat during meals.

  4. Tune into your body when you are hungry. Ask yourself, "What do I need?" Are you feeling particularly low on energy? Would protein such as nuts, tuna, hummus or some lean meat help? Are you already energized? Would cooling, raw vegetables or a salad be a good choice?

  5. Give yourself the gift of a break when you need one. Get up from your chair, walk out of your office, even out of the building for some fresh-air time or a good long walk especially if you are feeling overwhelmed. Bring your awareness to the experience-- the sunshine, the breeze, birds singing, etc.

  6. Manage your time so you can enjoy your afternoons and weekends for refreshing self-care and activities you enjoy and want to do. During self-care and fun, remember to bring your awareness to the moment.

  7. To recover from stressful or unpleasant events, sit with the feelings and pay attention to your body, how it feels and what it's trying to tell you. Ask yourself questions, "What is this? What's going on here?"

  8. Check in with yourself after awkward moments. Without judgment, bring attention to typical patterns of reacting to discomfort. Observe and ask, "What is this?"

  9. Bring awareness back to yourself when you find yourself angry. Ask yourself, "What's real here? What am I resisting or trying to control? What can I just accept as it is?"

  10. As you interact with others-- co-workers, friends, family members-- bring your attention to:
  • your emotions and how they might be getting in the way of understanding and really hearing the other person
  • giving the other person the space to freely express her thoughts and needs
  • recognizing and acknowledging the other person's emotions in order to validate their feelings and understand where they are coming from.
Just as the texture and flavor of waffles are improved by folding fluffy egg-whites into the batter, try gently folding mindfulness into your daily life and see what improvements you notice.

Communication in a Relationship

Communication is a vital part of our lives: a typical day involves many interactions between ourselves, our work colleagues and clients, our children, our friends, our ex's, future relationships, etc. This interaction takes place where we live, work, relax, socialize and wherever we perform routine tasks.

Communication skills are critical for building healthy relationships, especially when one realizes that one of the most common causes of relational breakdown is a lack of communication. Just as communication can be the most important part of a relationship; arguments can be the most destructive aspect - the closer we are to someone, the more easily we can bruise or be bruised. There is very little truth in the saying: "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never harm me." It's not what we say, but rather how we say it, that most often hurts another person.

Do you identify with any of these statements?

"He never listens to me when I talk!"

"She talks and talks, but never actually says anything!"

"It's like talking to a brick wall"

"I can't get through to you"

"We can't talk about anything important without getting into a fight"

"She's too emotional - she's either crying or shouting or complaining. It's easier to avoid her"

"He always gets defensive when I try to talk about issues"

Communication is a complex process; of which speaking only makes up for 10-20%. The other 80-90% is made up by facial expressions, body language, tone of voice, etc.

Communication is the art/ science of transferring a thought/ idea/ information from the mind of one complex human being to the mind of one or more complex human being(s). For communication to be effective, it must be a two-way process.

Dynamics of Interpersonal Communication

1. Facts: are both people communicating about the same set of facts? Try to separate the facts from thoughts or feelings.

2. Interpretations, Thoughts or Perceptions: Each person interprets a fact differently based on their belief system, personality, values and experience.

3. Feelings: how we are feeling, our current mood and frame of mind, etc can sub-consciously affect decisions and thoughts.

4. Intentions, Needs or Wants: hidden agendas; are we looking for comfort, clarification, information or simply a chance to interact? We judge ourselves on our intentions.

5. Actions: choice of words (is the intent to create harm?) + tone of voice + non-verbal speech = body language, posture, eye contact, facial expressions, etc.

"The medium is the message" => the way the message is delivered is the message itself.

6. Self: The communication centre, which includes the issue, topic or conflict at hand, has been "filtered" by the facts, interpretations, thoughts, feelings, intentions, and choices of behaviour / actions.

Listening and Feedback

Did I say what I meant to say? - Invite feedback to clarify communication.

Someone who's not listening lets their mind drift and is already preparing the next argument or opposing thought; inaccurate feedback or limited eye contact.

Listening is an active, not a passive process. When two people argue, they only hear "what they want to hear", not what's actually said. This equates to the accusation of "not listening". Most couples start arguing and within 5 minutes are arguing about the way they are arguing.

Don't argue when you're angry - you will not be able to listen objectively. Give yourself time to cool down and then broach the subject when you are in a more reasonable frame of mind.

It's important to give feedback - checking and confirming. Did I understand you correctly? Is this what you mean? I heard you say this: am I right? Feedback can be verbal / non-verbal e.g. a nod, smile, silence or a cold shoulder. No feedback is in itself a form of feedback.

If the words and actions contradict each other, it is better to believe the actions!

Conflict Resolution

Conflict resolution can either be Constructive or Destructive.

Destructive Style - hinders or inhibits the conflict resolution process:

Confrontational (win or lose, blaming)

Sabotage (focus on weak points, shaming)

Manipulation (blackmail, withdrawal)

Giving in (passive, submissive)

Avoidance (denial, withdrawal)

Constructive Style (trying to minimize the issues and avoiding the difficulties in resolving the problems)

Compromise (meet halfway, understanding)

Accommodate (open discussion, communication without confrontation)

Partnership (solutions, forgiveness, honesty)

When trying to resolve conflicts, try to clarify your goals, as you will probably share many of the same goals despite of your differences. Avoid bargaining, as this may lead to each party taking a rigid position which in turn can flare tempers.

When resolving conflicts, remember that their causes may run deep. Sweeping issues under the carpet isn't going to work in the long term, as old baggage will be brought up each time an argument starts. Try to fully resolve each issue as it comes along. You may find the following method useful:

1. Ask the other person for their feelings. Your conflict probably isn't about the issue that caused it to start in the first place. Don't forget that your goal is sorting out the problem, not winning an argument!

2. Ask the other person to define the problem. Stick to solving one problem at a time, that way you can understand each problem as the other person sees it.

3. Express your own feelings. Be careful to word them carefully, for example use phrases such as "I feel" rather than "I think you".

4. Define the problem as you see it. As your feelings come out, the solution may become clearer. Remember that by you listening to the other person; you will have set the tone for them to listen to you.

5. Create multiple solutions. Don't go back to your original agenda. Aim to find alternative or creative solutions that reduce emotions and tension.

6. Rate the possible solutions. Remember that no one can force an unacceptable solution on the other.

7. Combine and create a mutually acceptable solution. Create something acceptable to both parties, if this doesn't work , go back to step 1 and ensure both parties are being totally honest.

8. Be sure both parties agree to work towards resolving the issue.

Troubleshooting For Problems in Communication

Control or Power Issues: Effective communication cannot take place if one person has "control" over the other or where there is not mutual respect and equality of relationship. To stay in control leads to relational isolation as the underdog reacts in anger at being manipulated or belittled.

Triangulation: Do not bring in a third party to avoid direct confrontation. If you have a problem with someone, go directly to that person. Don't dump your accusations on mutual friends or your children in the hope of winning support to balance the scales in your favour - it leads to more substantial and long-lasting damage, especially when a child is used as a weapon between parents.

19 Steps to Effective Communication

1. See communication as an opportunity to praise, build-up, affirm, heal, support and give positive reinforcement, rather than to correct, criticise, tear down, hurt, wound, lash out at. Praise opens doors to further communication, while criticism shuts them down.

2. Remember that actions speak louder than words; non-verbal communication usually is more powerful than verbal communication. Avoid double messages in which the verbal and the non-verbal messages convey something contradictory. (Credibility gap)

3. Define what is important and stress it; define what is unimportant and de-emphasise or ignore it. Avoid fault-finding.

4. Communicate in ways that show respect for the other person's worth as a human being. Avoid statements which begin with the words "You never" or "I think you".

5. Be clear and specific in your communication. Avoid vagueness.

6. Be realistic and reasonable in your statements. Avoid exaggeration and sentences which begin with 'You always '.

7. Test all your assumptions verbally by asking if they are accurate. Avoid acting until this is done.

8. Recognize that each event can be seen from different points of view. Avoid assuming that other people see things like you do. (Perception)

9. Recognize that your family members and close friends are experts on you and your behaviour. Avoid the tendency to deny their observations about you, especially if you are not sure.

10. Recognize that disagreement can be a meaningful form of communication. Avoid destructive arguments.

11. Be honest and open about your feelings and viewpoints. Bring up all significant problems even if you are afraid that doing so will disturb another person. Speak the truth in love. Avoid sullen silences.

12. Do not put down and/or manipulate the other person with tactics such as ridicule, interrupting, name-calling, changing the subject, blaming, bugging, sarcasm, criticism, pouting, guilt-inducing, etc. Avoid the one-upmanship game.

13. Be more concerned about how your communication affects others than about what you intended. Avoid getting bitter if you are misunderstood.

14. Accept all feelings and try to understand why others feel and act as they do. Avoid the tendency to say, you shouldn't feel like that.
15. Be tactful considerate and courteous. Avoid taking advantage of the other person's feelings.

16. Ask questions and listen carefully. Avoid preaching or lecturing.

17. Do not use excuses. Avoid falling for the excuses of others.

18. Speak kindly politely and softly. Avoid nagging yelling or whining.

19. Recognize the value of humour and seriousness. Avoid destructive teasing.

Summary

As you look ahead to new relationships, you need to be able to break old and faulty communication patterns to allow for healthier interaction. The use of praise and positive reinforcement will reconstruct wounded and broken self-images and will build self-esteem, particularly in children. By becoming an effective communicator, you will also grow and become a better person which will positively enhance all your relationships.

Motivation - The Heart Of Self Improvement

Pain may sometimes be the reason why people change. Failing a test make us realize that we need to study. Debts remind us of our need to look for a source of income. Being humiliated gives us the push to speak up and fight for ourselves to save face from the next embarrassment. It may be a bitter experience, a friend's tragic story, a great movie, or an inspiring book that will help us get up and get just the right amount of motivation we need in order to improve ourselves.

With the countless negativities the world brings about, how do we keep motivated? Try these tips:

A - Achieve your dreams. Avoid negative people, things and places. Eleanor Roosevelt once said, "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."

B - Believe in yourself, and in what you can do.

C - Consider things from every angle and aspect. Motivation comes from determination. To be able to understand life, you should feel the sun from both sides.

D - Don't give up and don't give in. Thomas Edison failed once, twice, thousands of times before he came up with his invention and perfected the incandescent light bulb. Make motivation your steering wheel.

E - Enjoy. Work as if you don't need money. Dance as if nobody's watching. Love as if you never cried. Learn as if you'll live forever. Motivation takes place when people are happy.

F - Family and Friends - are life's greatest 'F' treasures. Don't lose sight of them.

G - Give more than is enough. Where does motivation and self improvement take place at work? At home? At school? When you expert extra effort in doing things.

H - Hang on to your dreams. They may dangle in there for a moment, but these little stars will be your driving force.

I - Ignore those who try to destroy you. Don't let other people to get the best of you. Stay away from toxic people - the kind of friends who hate to hear about your success.

J - Just be yourself. The key to success is to be yourself. And the key to failure is to try to please everyone.

K - keep trying no matter how hard life may seem. When a person is motivated, eventually he sees a harsh life finally clearing out, paving the way to self improvement.

L - Learn to love yourself. Now isn't that easy?

M - Make things happen. Motivation is when your dreams are put into work clothes.

N - Never lie, cheat or steal. Always play a fair game.

O - Open your eyes. People should learn good sense. They see things in 2 ways - how they want things to be, and how they should be.

P - Practice makes perfect. Practice is about motivation. It lets us learn ways we can recover from our mistakes.

Q - Quitters never win. And winners never quit. So, choose your fate - are you going to be a quitter? Or a winner?

R - Ready yourself. Motivation is also about preparation. We must hear the little voice within us telling us to get started before others will get on their feet and try to push us around. Remember, it wasn't raining when Noah build the ark.

S - Stop procrastinating.

T - Take control of your life. Discipline or self control jibes synonymously with motivation. Both are key factors in self improvement.

U - Understand others. If you know very well how to talk, you should also learn how to listen. Yearn to understand first, and to be understood the second.

V - Visualize it. Motivation without vision is like a boat on a dry land.

W - Want it more than anything. Dreaming means believing. And to believe is something that is rooted out from the roots of motivation and self improvement.

X - X Factor is what will make you different from the others. When you are motivated, you tend to put on "extras" on your life like extra time for family, extra help at work, extra care for friends, and so on.

Y - You are unique. No one in this world looks, acts, or talks like you. Value your life and existence, because you're just going to have it once.

Z - Zero in on your dreams and go for it!

Genuine Happiness Comes From Within

Life isn't the sweetest candy. Sometimes, when I feel like the world is just too heavy, I look around and find people who continue to live fascinating and wonderful lives. And then thoughts come popping into my mind like bubbles from nowhere - "How did their life become so adorably sweet? How come they still can manage to laugh and play around despite a busy stressful life?" Then I pause and observe for awhile. I figured out that maybe, they start to work on a place called 'self''.

So, how does one become genuinely happy? Step 1 is to love yourself.

Someone once said that "loving means accepting." To love oneself means to accept that you are not a perfect being, but behind the imperfections must lie a great bit of courage to be able to discover ways of how to improve your ability to recover from your mistakes.

Genuine happiness also pertains to contentment. When you are contented with the job you have, the way you look, with your family, your friends, the place you live in, your car, and all the things you now have - truly, you know the answer to the question "how to be genuinely happy."

When we discover a small start somewhere from within, that small start will eventually lead to something else, and to something else. But if you keep questioning life like it has never done you any good, you will never be able to find genuine happiness.

I believe that life is about finding out about right and wrong, trying and failing, winning and losing. These are things that happen as often as you inhale and exhale. Failure in a person's life has become as abundant and necessary as air. But this should not hinder us from becoming happy.

How to be genuinely happy in spite of all these? I tell you- every time you exert effort to improve the quality of life and your being, whether it is cleaning up your room, helping a friend, taking care of your sick dog, failing an exam and trying again, life gives you equivalent points for that.

Imagine life as a big score board like those which are used in sports. Every time you take a step forward, you make points. Wouldn't it be nice to look at that board at the end of each game and think to yourself "Whew! I got a point today. I'm glad I gave it a shot", instead of looking at it all blank and realizing "Geez, I didn't even try today. I wish I had the guts to try out. We could have won!" and then walk away.

Genuine happiness isn't about driving the hottest Formula 1 car, nor getting the employee of the year award, earning the highest pay, or beating the sales quota. Sometimes, the most sought after prizes in life don't always go to the fastest, the strongest, the bravest or not even the best. So, how do you become genuinely happy? Every one has his own definition of happiness.

Happiness for a writer may mean launching as many best selling books as possible. Happiness for a basketball rookie may mean getting the rookie of the year award. Happiness for a beggar may mean a lot of money. Happiness for a businessman may mean success.

So, really now, how do we become genuinely happy? Simple. You don't have to have the best things in this world. It's about doing and making the best out of every single thing. When you find yourself smiling at your own mistakes and telling yourself "Oh, I'll do better next time", you carry with you a flame of strong willpower to persevere that may spread out like a brush fire. You possess a willingness to stand up again and try - that will make you a genuinely happy person.

When you learn to accept yourself and your own faults. You pass step 1 in the project of how to become genuinely happy. For as long as you know how to accept others, you will also be accepted. For as long as you love and know how to love, you will receive love tenfold back.

Again, throw me that same question how to become genuinely happy. I'll refer you to a friend of mine who strongly stated- "Most of us know that laughter is the best medicine to life's aches and pain. But most of us don't know that the best kind of laughter is laughter over yourself. Because then you don't just become happy, you become free."

Positive Networking

Networking is skill which is extremely important in order to make contact with different people. Not only is networking required within the workplace, it is also required outside in various other situations. For a woman to have positive networking skills is very important. Not only is a woman usually in charge of the socializing of her family, she is also sometimes responsible for gathering more clientele for the business she works in. If she has her own business, networking becomes a mandatory skill. For all these circumstances, positive networking skills are extremely important.

Some people just meet others in order to add as many names in their database and hence disregard quality and give more importance to quantity instead. When networking is used incorrectly and for quantity purposes only, it is known as networking abuse or when it comes to emails may be regarded as "spam". As a woman entrepreneur, you must avoid this where possible  as your name is your business.

In order for networking to be positive, women must develop a well thought out network game plan. Focus initially on getting to know the people who you meet, make a decision about whether they are a match with your business and if they aren't move on. Always be polite, however, don't go to networking events expecting to hand out many cards, work on quality and not quantity and your business will reflect this decision.

In order to develop positive networking skills, there are some tactics which you can follow. Seven of these tips are mentioned below:

1. Always smile: A smile shows a person is warm and friendly. When meeting new people, smiling is welcoming and appropriate.

2. Look at people in their eye: When talking to someone, look them in the eye while you speak. This is seen as a compliment and is the best way to interact with someone new and whom you have just met.

3. Listen to the other person speaks: When having a conversation, it is polite to listen to what the other person has to say. This shows interest and if the person with whom you are conversing is likely to be someone whom you can deal with in the future, active listening skills will help immensely.

4. Have appropriate body language: Whatever impression new contacts will have of you the first time you meet is bound to be the lasting impression. In order for them to remember you in a positive way, have good body language and be relaxed and friendly.

5. Do not be pushy: No one likes a person who behaves strongly or acts in a needy manner. Hold your head up high and do not be afraid to show people who you are and what you believe in. but remember not to go arrogant.

6. Give a compliment: Everyone likes to receive a compliment. Ensure it is heartfelt and truthful. Most people can judge if a compliment is genuine or not, so be careful about what you say.

7. Have a business card ready: You never know when these may come in handy!


"If I'm Perfect, No One Will Reject Me" - Healing Perfectionism

Do you believe that being "perfect" gives you control over how people feel about you?"

If you do, then you are coming from 3 big false beliefs that are causing you much unhappiness.

FALSE BELIEF #1

"I can have control over how people feel about me."

Think for a moment whether or not others have control over how you feel about them. Can someone do everything "right" and be "perfect" in their own eyes, yet you don't enjoy being around them or you don't feel connected with them?

Of course!

Others may influence how you feel about them, but they have no control over how you feel about them. If you are a basically accepting person, then you might like them even if they get angry or withdrawn. If you are generally a judgmental person, then there may be little they can do for you to like them.

Now turn this around regarding how others feel about you. Since you have no control over whether or not another person is accepting or judgmental, it stands to reason that you also have no control over how they feel about you, regardless of how perfectly loving, open, caring, giving, understanding, handsome, beautiful, or rich you are.

FALSE BELIEF #2

"There is a standard of perfectionism and I can reach it."

I grew up believing that there was a "right" and "perfect" way to be. Then I learned that what I thought was right and perfect was not necessarily what others thought was right and perfect. In fact, it seemed that each person had a completely different understanding of what it means to be perfect!

This was quite distressing to me, as it took away my illusion of control over how people felt about me. At that time many years ago, I was terrified of rejection, so it gave me great comfort to believe that if only I was perfect enough, then I would never be rejected. Without a standard of perfection, what would be my guiding light to feel safe?

FALSE BELIEF #3

"I am basically flawed and need to strive to cover up my flaws and appear to be better than I am."

As long as I believed that I was basically flawed in some way, I was afraid of rejection. When I learned how to connect with my spiritual Guidance (God) and see myself through the eyes of truth rather than through the eyes of my parents and others, I was able to see that my soul essence - my core Self - is already perfect, a perfect individualized expression of the Divine.

What was flawed were my beliefs that were programmed into me and needed to be healed.

HEALING PERFECTIONISM

Imagine how life would be for you if you knew that you were already perfectly wonderful and incredible just the way you are in your true Self? What if you could separate out the flawed, wounded, programmed part of you - the part you created to help you survive pain - from the magnificent part of you that God created. What if you could see that your ego wounded self - with all your fears and protections and ways of trying to have control over getting love and avoiding pain - is NOT who you are.

Then, instead of perfectionism being your guiding light, being fully and passionately yourself becomes your guiding light!

I assure you, this is a MUCH easier way to live!

Managing Pressure for Work-Life Balance

Women have to face all types of pressures in life. Whether these pressures are related to the family life or work, they need to be dealt with and managed in the appropriate way. There needs to be a balance between these two aspects of life and here's some tips on how every woman can manage the stress of her life and keep the two aspects in a balanced state.

1. If you don't like what you are doing and are unable to find time for your family with the current career, try looking for a role which is more suitable to you and which allows you to take time out for your family. Look for a career which is less stressful and less time consuming. Searching for a new job may take some of your time but the end results are bound to be fruitful.

2. If changing your career is too drastic a change, you may be able to change the role you are in with another with your current employer. Look for positions which do not have the same amount of stress as your current job.

3. Even if you have a hectic schedule, it is important you take time out to do the things you enjoy. Schedule time for yourself and with the family. Spend some quality time with people whose company you enjoy.

4. If your workload at home is too great, share it with the other family members. Trying to manage all the work at home while managing the workload of the office as well is putting you in a very unhealthy position. Sharing the responsibilities of the home will not only reduce the workload you have, it will also encourage others to take responsibility for their own lives.

5. Even with the rest of the family pitching in to the housework, if you feel it is not enough then seek some outside help. You could find a babysitter or nanny to take care of your children or you could ask grandparents to look after them during the day while you are at work. It is important that you take the time to find appropriate alternatives.

6. Don't stress the small stuff. There's too many other things to think about to get caught up with the little things that happen that really don't matter. Don't stress on the things which are not so important.

7. Learn to manage your time. Say no where appropriate and you can then focus on the tasks which have higher priorities. Maintaining a balance between your personal life and your work life will ensure your happiness and success.

Friday, 12 July 2013

Why Is It Sometimes So Hard To Do What's Best For You?

When you start to realize that you may very well be in a relationship with the wrong partner for you, how do you muster up the courage to let go – to do what's best for you?
Are you in a relationship where deep down you know the person you're with is not the best person for you? Perhaps they don't communicate considerately – especially when things don't go their way. Maybe they're just too set in their ways and have that "it's my way or no way" mentality. And you know that without proper communication, nothing good can last. Sooner or later it will end.
Maybe they show you affection, but only when needed. They say "love you, too" way more often than "I love you." Perhaps they can't fully respect and appreciate everything about you because of their own insecurities (to which they may not realize or want to admit).
This person may have a good heart, and may even believe they know how to nurture a relationship. But after being with them, you clearly see that they may not be as mature for you in the relationship department. You consciously challenge yourself to do better for the relationship; however, your partner isn't cooperating at the same level.
With this said, you just know you're both not on the same relationship level. You know the best thing for you is to leave the relationship, but why is what's best for you so hard to do?
You may have had some great times with this person regardless of your differences. Perhaps remembering the good times and hoping for more is what's keeping you in the relationship – which doesn't help the situation.
But think about this: despite the good times, with all the other issues surfacing, is it worth it? Maybe it's worth the fun and experience for the first six months or so. But can you see a healthyrelationship with this person in the long term? If so, great! Continue on. But if not, maybe you need to reconsider.
Let me just say this: it is not your job to fix them. You don't have to try and rescue them if it means drowning yourself in the midst of it. I know sometimes it's hard to do the right thing for you, especially if you're a loyal, caring individual. But if you don't look out for you first, you won't be good to anyone else.
Saying this however, if you must stay a little longer because you feel you've already invested more time and emotion than you had anticipated, then put a time frame on it. Continue to be kind, loving and committed to the relationship, but give yourself a deadline.
Maybe you can say "I'll do my best with this person for another month or so, but I must see satisfying progress or better. And if I don't, then at least I know I did my best and I can now leave the relationship with no regrets."