Friday, February 29, 2008

Winning Through Adversity Part 2

Yesterday, we began discussing the steps necessary to win through adversity - how to use problems and a positive attitude for your advantage. Today we will continue this discussion. As we noted in the last post, everybody has problems arise so knowing how to deal with it is crucial.

5. Develop and maintain a deep spiritual relationship with your creator, God.
Many times people forget God is there until some tragic event happens and then they turn to God. While it is definitely good to turn to God during these times, if we have a continual abiding relationship with Him all the time it is so much easier to face any problems that arise. He even promised that He will work all things together for good to those that love Him and in my experience that has ALWAYS been true. For more information you can visit

6. Figure out if the problem is something that you can change or not.
Often we worry over things that we have no control over.

7. If it is something that you can not change make a resolution to let go of it. It is hard to function properly in aspect of life if you are preoccupied with something over which you have no control. It waste many precious hours. If you can not control it decide to change your attitude about it. It is so liberating to do.

8. If the problem is something you can change, then take a long hard look at it and DECIDE to change it. Program your mind to automatically look for the solution in any problem. This has been one of the single biggest things that has helped me to deal with adversity. When you focus on the problem itself it only gets bigger and bigger. When you tell yourself there is a solution and start looking for it great things happen. Your mind begins to go wild looking for a solution and good comes about as you go to action implementing the solution. Problems are negative. Solutions are positive.

Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude

9. Whether the problem is something that you can change or not, look for the good in it.
Usually I try to make it a rule to never assume anything. But this a a big exception.... Always assume that good is hidden in each difficulty. If you believe that you will find the good. Train your mind to think of a problem as a good thing. W. Clemment Stone is know for saying "Great!" whenever a problem arises. Was he successful?? You better believe it!!Always look for opportunities and you will always find them. This is true not only in adversity, but as you go through out each and every day. It's a matter of programming the mind that way.

10. Believe it is exactly what you need at the present time.
This is one of my favorites! Assume that whatever circumstance you are currently facing is exactly what you need to best reach your goals and be successful. Wow!!! How powerful is that!! Assume that God has given you this exact problem to help you be who you need to be and do what you need to do, to help you expand and grow. Michael Jordan says it this way... "I succeeded because I failed." In other words, he trained his mind to think that each failure was exactly what he needed to teach him the lesson he needed.

Go face whatever life throws at you!!!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Steps Needed to Win through Adversity

Well, we all go through it. It's called adversity. It's called problems. It's called trails. It's called struggles. It's called whatever you want to call it, but we must all admit that it happens to all of us. No one can escape them. We can live our lives in such a way as to avoid some of them and hopefully we are all working to do that, but things do come up. So if they are inevitable what can we do about them? How can we win over them and come out on top and even become better because of them? That's what we will talk about today. As I think about all the ingredients necessary to come out on top this may become a series in stead of just one post... It's so good I can't write it all in one post :)

1. Recognize that Problems Do Happen.
As we have already noted, problems do happen. Don't be foolish enough to think they will never happen to you, because they do happen to EVERYONE. Don't go around expecting bad things to happen or be paranoid. That will only make things worse. Instead, simply recognize the fact that anything can happen. Recognizing this fact, helps us to be prepared when things do come up. We're not shocked and taken off guard. Thinking they will never happen to you only sets yourself up for failure. I heard a wise person say one time that you're either in a problem now, coming out of one or about to enter one.

2. Decide Ahead of Time How You Will React.
Since we know that problems will come up decide ahead of time to be positive. Decide ahead of time that you will come out on top. Decide ahead of time that you will look for the good in each and every problem. It all starts with a decision. If you don't decide ahead of time how you will react, then you will be devastated with each and every problem.

Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude

3. Look at the Big Picture.

This requires you to HAVE a big picture. In the whole scheme of things how important is this? Will it really matter in one week, one month, one year, ten years or 100 years from now? Sometimes, simply asking yourself that question will eliminate your frustration all together and you can give it up.

The big picture requires you to have vision and goals and priorities. Know where you are going and what's important to you. Step back and look at things. How does this problem fit into all of this? Does it really fit into your vision and goals? If not, maybe it's not worth worrying about. Actually, just knowing and laying out a clear vision will prevent you from even considering some things as problems. If you have a clear vision, you may be able to just laugh at some things. If the problem does fit into and effect your vision and priorities follow the rest of the principles laid out here.

4. Focus on the Future.
Again, this requires you to see the big picture and have a clear vision. Know where you are going. Whatever you are facing, focus on the future, instead of the past. Our natural tendency is to turn toward the past and dwell on past failures that remind us of this particular problem. That will only make things worse as that will cause us to be dwelling on the negative. Focusing on the future forces us to think on the positive. Focusing on the past can easily get us into blaming mode, whether that be blaming others or ourselves for this and previous problems. Instead look forward and focus on where you want to be and take responsibility to move yourself in that direction. Focusing on the problem and the past only makes the problem bigger.

Make a decision to start implementing these steps steps today. You CAN come out on top!

More for next time....

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Do You Want More out of Life?

Do you ever find yourself disappointed with life? Does it often seem like life is just not treating you fairly? I was at this place in my life for a long time. I didn’t understand why all these good things seemed to be “happening” to some people, while it never happened to me or other people that I knew.

Finally, I heard someone say one time that you get out of life what you put into it. I decided to test this what seemed to me like a hypothesis. What did I have to lose? Well, I’m happy to report that it worked. What I found is that it is not a hypothesis, but rather a principle. In other words it always works. It is something that has natural consequences.

Are you sitting around and waiting for things to happen the way you want them and wondering why they are not turning out the way you want? The biggest secret I can pass along is that these things will never HAPPEN to you – that is if you are sitting around waiting for them to happen. In other words, you have to make life “happen” or turn out the way you want. You see if you are sitting around your life will just sit around with you. If you get up and make some plans and get busy putting them into action your life will go with you. It will take you where you lead it.

Do you want more out of your marriage? Put something into it. It requires effort, selflessness, paying attention and action to make it what you want it to be, not waiting for your spouse to do all the work.

Do you want more out of your business? What are you putting into it? Are you waiting for that “big thing” to happen? Are you putting into it the actions that bring results? Make sure you are spending your time on the activities that do bring results, not just doing busy work.

Are you taking life too seriously? Do you want life to be more fun? What you are you doing to lighten things up? Do you need to look at things a little lighter? Put a little humor into life. Start looking for humor in situations. If you train your mind to look for it you will find it. Point out the funny things and laugh at them. It will go a long way. Make a decision to lighten up and enjoy life more. I’m not saying not to take life seriously. That’s exactly the opposite of the point of this post. Take seriously what you need to, but you will enjoy life a lot more and even get a lot more accomplished if you decide to laugh more and lighten up. Laughter makes your brain work better.

Do you want to get more out of parenthood? What are you putting into it? Are you taking the time to spend with your children? Are you spending quality time with them? Are you taking the time to teach them what is important and instilling the principles of life in them? We all make mistakes, but we can make a decision to move forward.

Is your spiritual life lacking? Are you waiting to see what God is going to do for you? What about asking what you can do for God. It’s amazing the difference you will see. It’s amazing the blessings God will send your way when you work for Him instead of waiting for Him to work for you. Once you put the effort in the returns will be more than you can count.

Do you wish you had better neighbors? Be a better neighbor.

Do you wish you had more friends or that your friends would treat you better? Be a friend. Be a better friend.

Do you want more love? Give more love.

Do you want more happiness? Work to make others happy.

Do you want better health or want your health to last a long time? Take care of your body. Eat healthy, exercise, get rid of the chemicals and toxins in your home and find some high quality nutritional supplements. Think positive. Studies show that changing the way you think and look at things affects your brain chemistry and will improve your health. Laugh more.

Enjoy all the rewards of giving your all. It’s the only way to live!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Where is Your Company Headed?

My husband is currently getting his masters degree in engineering management. Basically, it's a business degree for engineers. The principles are all the same whether it's engineering or a small business. He's learning all the ingredients necessary to run a successful business. In one of his classes his teacher compared the vision of a company to a rubber band. I thought it was worth looking into some more.

From what my husband can remember this idea is talked about in The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization - a book that I will be looking into some more. The analogy is that on one end of the rubber band is you. At the other end is your vision - where you see yourself going. This teacher defined vision as a short succinct, and inspiring statement of what the organization intends to become and to achieve at some point in the future, often stated in competitive terms. It describes aspirations for the future, without specifying the means that will be used to achieve those desired ends. It is the big thing is you want to accomplish - what you want to be known for or what you want your business to be known for. It should be unique and something you feel passionate about.

What happens when you have vision is the vision pulls you in the directions you want to go just like a rubber band. Everything you do is based upon that vision and is guided by it. It becomes you. All the strategies and goals you lay out and put into practice is guided by that vision. It pulls everything together. It makes everything you do worthwhile. It gives you meaning to what you are doing. This is so powerful. It is huge. Without a clear vision you might as well not even bother doing anything because you will be flailing around aimlessly going nowhere because you don't even know where you are going.

Once your vision is in place then you can lay out a strategy to reach the other end of the rubber band. Your strategy will lay out how you plan to accomplish this vision. In a business this is often done by becoming an expert or authority in a specific area. Strategy is more detailed than your vision. Once you have the vision and strategy down, you can then lay out specific measurable goals with time frames to make the vision come about.

The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization

The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Urgent or Important?

I have come across this quote before. I find it disturbing almost and I think I should. I think it's meant to be disturbing - to make us think about what is really important and where our priorities are and what we should be spending our time doing. What do I need to reevaluate in my life???......

"Most things
which are urgent are not important, and most things which are important are not urgent."

- President Dwight Eisenhower

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Why Relationships Fail and How to Turn Them Around

First of all, let me apologize for not writing more this week. It has been one challenging week, but God just keeps blessing us and we must move on.

Today's post will cover why marriages and all relationships fail and what can be done about it.

Many experts will say that miscommunication or lack of communication is the number one reason for problems in marriages and relationships and why they fail. While communication is very big, I beg to differ with the fact that it is the number one problem or reason. A closer look will show that it actually goes much deeper.

Let's reveal the real reasons relationships fail and why happiness so often seems to be so far away. Please do not make the mistake of just reading over these lightly. They are very deep and eye opening (if you are open) and have the potential to dramatically improve your relationships:

1. You think that the other person will make you happy. "If I only have this one person then I will be happy."

2. You are seeking what you can get out of the relationship and what it and the other person can do for you.

3. You seek to change the other person to suit your needs and make them who you want them to be.

4. You blame the other person for everything that is going wrong in the relationship and for making you unhappy.

5. You take your spouse for granted.

Do you notice a correlation between any of these??? Look closer.... It can be summed up by this:

Selfishness and lack of responsibility

So now let us explore the problem with the statements above, but most importantly what can be done about them:

1. What's the problem with the first problem we noted above? If you are looking for your happiness in this person eventually they are going to disappoint you. Then you will be devastated and fall apart. You will also have a tendency to personalize EVERYTHING they do or say. Instead of thinking about how this person is going to or is making you happy, choose to have peace and happiness with in yourself no matter what they do or say or think - or what anyone else says or does or thinks. People will ALWAYS disappoint you no matter how hard they try - period.

2. As long as you are seeking what YOU can get out of the relationship and what it and the other person can do for YOU you will never know love or be satisfied in the relationship. Again, you will be disappointed. Love and happiness only comes when you put aside your own needs and focus on what you can do to please the other person - and DO it. It is only then that your own needs will get met. Love is a choice and requires action. Just give it a try. Your relationship may not change over night, but it will change.

3. Seeking to change the other person to suit your needs and make them who you want them to be might sound like a good idea, but there's only one problem - you can not change other people. The only thing and person you can change is yourself - your thoughts, feelings and actions. Take a close look at what your faults are - in particular, your faults in the relationship and work to change them. Be open to seeing your faults. If you're having trouble seeing them, just ask your spouse or the other person. Be humble. Say, "I know I haven't been the kind of spouse I could be in our relationship. I'm sorry. I want to work on it and get better. Could you please tell me what I can work on?" Be open and prepared to hear what they say. Also, work on thinking positive. Recognize when the first negative thought comes into your head and replace it with a positive thought.

4. As long as you blame the other person for everything that is going wrong in the relationship and for making you unhappy then you will be unhappy. My favorite quote is: "You can blame others for your unhappiness or you can be happy." As we have already stated, choose to be happy no matter what. Also, instead, take responsibility for everything that is wrong in the relationship, whether it is actually your fault or not, and make a decision to do something to change it. Make a decision to change everything you don't like by changing it yourself, not by trying to change the other person. Until you stop blaming others for anything, you will always, always be miserable. I know. I learned the hard way. Life is much better and easier when you take responsibility.

5. As long as you take your spouse for granted, you will never care enough to follow these principles. View your spouse as a blessing - a gift from God. Then you will begin to see them in a whole new light. You will see how truly blessed you are to have them and want to do things to please them. Both you and your spouse will enjoy this new view.

Enjoy the changes!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Suicide Prevention Prayer

Yesterday morning I was awaken from sleep by my cell phone ringing that I forgot to turn off the night before. The caller was informing me that someone I love was talking about committing suicide. What a scary and startling way to wake up! The person did get some help and did not follow through with it thankfully. Since I was awaken so suddenly by it, it was as if everything I knew to do went out the door.

After things calmed down, I began to think about how I would handle the situation differently if it happened again and I began to look for opportunities in it. I began to think about what I would say to this person if there was a next time. Somehow my mind led me to a prayer that I could help this person pray and I just had to write it down. It turned into not only a prayer that I could help this person pray if that situation arose again, but I think really more importantly it turned into a prayer that we can pray every day so that our minds never get to the point of even thinking about suicide. I decided to post that prayer here for everyone's benefit.

The main thing it reminds us of is to see the big picture and keep our focus on it.

Please feel free to use this prayer and refer this to anyone you think could use it - or better yet just refer it to everyone you love. Let's make an effort to prevent suicide!

It also turned into a good reason to be and/or the blessings of being a Christian - if you need more info on becoming a Christian please refer to

Here is the prayer:

"Dear Father, life is hard. So often it really just does not seem fair. Help me to remember that you never promised it would be easy, but instead that you would always be there for me and give me strength, comfort and wisdom when I turn to you and that I can have peace just resting in that.

Father, I realize that I am a sinful creature and that even though I do not deserve your love and forgiveness, you continually pour it out on me anyway. You are such an awesome God and I am so blessed.

Father, sometimes I really struggle and do not know all the answers and that is hard, but I realize that you are way bigger than any of my problems and that I can handle anything with
you on my side.

Father, so many times it is easy to get caught up in life’s daily problems and I think the world is against me and that there is no use in trying anymore. Please help me to remember that life is all about you and bringing glory and honor to you and that it is not about me. That is so hard to see

Father, so often when struggles arise all I can think about is the problem and how it affects ME. Help me not to try to avoid all of life’s problems because they are inevitable, but help me to focus on the solution to the problem and opportunity contained in it and how I can use it to your glory, not on the problem itself. For when I focus on the problem it only gets bigger, but help me to remember that good and opportunities can come from EVERYTHING if I look for it and let it.

Father, some people are mean and say cruel things. Help me to remember that just because someone says or does something that does not mean it is true. Help me to remember that it is only true of me if I choose to make it true of me. Help me to remember that you not only made me, but that you made me in your image!! Help me to remember that no one can harm my thoughts unless I give them permission.

Father, so many things do not go like I want them to. Give me the wisdom to discern between the things I can change and the things I can not. Help me to have the right attitude toward the things I can not change and to give them up to you. Help me to remember that the only thing and person I can control is myself – my thoughts and my actions. Help me to give up all other control to you, for the burden is too much for me.

Father, help me to remember that when I allow the first negative thought to come into my head that I am giving Satan an open invitation to come in and invade in my mind and have a party. Dear Father, help me to recognize Satan’s tactics and when he knocks on the door and help me to check to make sure the locks are bolted shut and invite you to come in instead for a spiritual feast. Help me to turn my thoughts to your blessings and toward what I can do to serve you.

Father, I realize that not everyone will give me approval even though I would like them to do so. That can hurt, but please help me to forgive them and remember that as long as I am looking outward and seeking approval from others that I will be miserable at best. Help me to instead look inward and to look to you to find more ways to love you and bring glory to you and to
for ways to help others to feel approved by me instead.

Father, help me to remember that any time I expect others to look down on me that they will because I have already given them permission. Help me not to expect this from others, but help me to remember that any time I expect to find the good in
others I will find it.

Father, help me to remember that you want to send blessings my way. Please help me to be open to receiving them.

Father, there are many things that cloud my vision. Please help me to most of all remember that my purpose for being here is to bring glory and honor to YOU by taking YOU into the world. Help me to remember that it is all about YOU and living for YOU and seeking ways to show your love, peace and happiness to the world. Help me to do the things that would cause people to look at me and say, “Behold the Lamb” as John said of Jesus in the Bible. Help me to live in such a way that people see JESUS instead of seeing me.

It is only when I lose sight of this vision that I focus on my problems and how big they are and how they affect me, instead of remembering who I am and that I am here for YOUR GLORY and to use my problems FOR YOU. Father, I realize that only when I am seeking to shine your light to the world does life make any sense or have any meaning. All else is vanity.

Father, make my life all about you.

In Jesus’ name, amen."

Nelson's NKJV Study Bible

Update: If this prayer helped you you may also enjoy a series of posts that I am in the middle of posting on Steps to Happiness. It begins with Are You a Puppet on Strings? - Taking Back Control of Your Life on March 18, 2008. You may also consider subscribing to this blog to learn more about inner peace and happiness. I hope I can help many many people find this peace that is possible to possess.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Are the Successful Destined for Success?

As a young man, Abraham Lincoln went to war a captain and returned a private. Afterwards, he was a failure as a businessman. As a lawyer in Springfield, he was too impractical and temperamental to be a success. He turned to politics and was defeated in his first try for the legislature, again defeated in his first attempt to be nominated for congress, defeated in his application to be commissioner of the General Land Office, defeated in the senatorial election of 1854, defeated in his efforts for the vice-presidency in 1856, and defeated in the senatorial election of 1858. At about that time, he wrote in a letter to a friend, "I am now the most miserable man living. If what I feel were equally distributed to the whole human family, there would not be one cheerful face on the earth."

The Success Principles(TM): How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Success or Failure? - Never Give Up

Have you ever failed at anything (or multiple things) and because of that thought that you were a failure and that you would never succeed at anything? Maybe this will make you think:

Thomas Edison
's teachers said he was "too stupid to learn anything." He was fired from his first two jobs for being "non-productive." As an inventor, Edison made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb. When a reporter asked, "How did it feel to fail 1,000 times?"
Edison replied,

"I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps."

Remember you are only a failure if you listen to yourself and others and who tell you so. Resolve today to turn your failures into steps.

The Law of Success In Sixteen Lessons by Napoleon Hill (Complete, Unabridged)

Friday, February 15, 2008

Success - Who Would I Be IF.....

Can anyone be successful?

As I was sitting at the feet of the most influential woman in my life last week listening to her speak, a thought occurred to me that I could not put out of my head. The lady who introduced the speaker told all about her life, but the one thing that stuck out the most to me was who her parents were. Her parents were very well known and influential people among the group I was with and to many others. After all the time I had known her personally I had forgotten that her parents were who they were.

So the question kept ringing in my ears: "Can someone really be great and successful if they did not have successful well known parents?" What if you did not grow up in an environment where you were always encouraged and told you could do anything you wanted if you put your trust in God? What if you grew up in a negative environment? I asked these questions because, like many of you, to a large part that was my reality. (I am not saying this to put down or dishonor or blame my parents in any way. They simply raised us in the only way they knew how and the way they had been taught. I had great parents who taught me to love and serve God and that I am very thankful for.) But the encouragement to inspire to greatness was not there.

Rags to Riches?

So where does this leave us? Is it possible to reach heights if we've never been encouraged to do so? You better believe it? I'm living proof. Is it more difficult? Sure, but the thing to note is it is absolutely possible - if and only if we tell ourselves it's possible. It only takes a reprogramming of the mind. If our subconscious mind has always been programmed for unsuccess we must recognize that, bring it to consciousness and reprogram it for success.

There are hundreds and hundreds of stories of people who almost literally went from rags to riches. One of my favorites is the story of Mike Brescia who went from being homeless to one of the most successful salesman of all times. His story is a must read.

How do we do it?

So how does it happen? How do we make something of ourselves if we must start from scratch? How do we reprogram our minds once we see the need to do so?

First, we must let go of the past. As long as we are stuck in the past and blaming anyone for our current situation we will never go forward. Instead we must focus on what we can learn from the past and how to use it to move forward.

Second, we must believe anything is possible. Without this belief we will go nowhere.

Third, submerge yourself in learning from those who have been successful.
Read, listen to and learn everything you can from them. If you REALLY believe it is possible you will seek out and find the information you need. Your mind won't let you stop.

Fourth, which really goes before number two: after the question hit me about if you had to have super encouraging parents to be a success, the next question that came to mind was:

Who would I really be if I had never been told I couldn't do anything or if it had been instilled in me that I could do absolutely anything if I put my trust in God?

That is a question that we should continually ponder. This requires us to dream of things that others consider impossible. Have I mentioned before about believing anything is possible? That's no accident!

Fifth, once we have determined the person we want to be, the next step is to write out a description of the person you want to be and what you want to accomplish.

Sixth, Act out the person you have DECIDED to become.

Seven, Act as thought it were IMPOSSIBLE TO FAIL
It's all about deciding to and acting on the decision without letting the possibility of retreat enter your mind. Persevere no matter what.

Go for it!!!!

Recomended audio for reprogramming the mind:
Think and Grow Rich (Original, Unabridged Edition 12 CD Set)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day Advice

I was just thinking about this special day of love. I remember I used to hate Valentine's Day because I never had anyone to share it with. Now, I am the most blessed woman in the world to have a husband who loves me so much.

I'll be honest I haven't put much thought into this Valentine's Day - a little, but not a lot.

Anyway, the point I would like to make here is that love is a choice. You can choose to sit back and feel sorry for yourself and wonder why your spouse won't do anything for you or you can choose to love him/her with all your heart and choose to focus on what pleases him/her and take actions to do it. It simply takes selflessness, attention to what they like and action. It's amazing that if we choose to give love we get so much love back (but, not if you're seeking to get it back.)

Learning To Love

Medical Proof that Cognitive Behaviorial Tharapy Changes Brain Chemistry

First of all let's address:

What is cognitive behavioral therapy and why does it work?

According to cognitive therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy is defined in this way:

Cognitive therapy: A relatively short-term form of psychotherapy based on the concept that the way we think about things affects how we feel emotionally. Cognitive therapy focuses on present thinking, behavior, and communication rather than on past experiences and is oriented toward problem solving. Cognitive therapy has been applied to a broad range of problems including depression, anxiety, panic, fears, eating disorders, substance abuse, and personality problems.

Cognitive therapy is sometimes called cognitive behavior therapy because it aims to help people in the ways they think (the cognitive) and in the ways they act (the behavior). Cognitive therapy has, for instance, been used to help cocaine-dependent individuals become abstinent from cocaine and other substances. The underlying assumption is that learning processes play an important role in the development and continuation of cocaine abuse and dependence. These same learning processes can be used to help individuals reduce their drug use.

Personal and Medical Proof and How it Works

As someone who has gone through a cognitive behavioral course to learn to stop negative thoughts and to form healthy accurate thinking patterns and is now teaching it, I know first hand that it works. I have witnessed it in my own life and in the lives of others. Why does it also work for depression and complete addiction recovery? Because it actually addresses the root cause of depression and addictions - unresolved emotional pain - something that antidepressants can not do.

Knowing first hand that cognitive behavioral therapy works, it's great to see medical proof in an MRI scan that it does. We have the power to change our brain chemistry by addressing the cause of depression and stopping negative thinking. Realizing that you can stop negative thinking and learning how to is an absolutely wonderfully liberating thing. Change and happiness and inner peace can be achieved by recognizing what triggers negative thoughts and then stopping them.

See this article to learn more about how cognitive behavioral therapy alters the brain chemistry (and more).

See this website to learn more about a cognitive behavioral therapy course in the Nashville, TN area.

See this website to learn more about how to remove emotional pain.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

How to "Turn a Deaf Ear"

What can we learn from frogs about happiness? Last week I heard the story of the frog race for the first time. It is a very worthy lesson about happiness that would benefit everyone if they really took to heart and life the lessons contained in it. I thought it was so beneficial I just had to share it. Here it is:

There once was a bunch of tiny frogs who arranged a climbing competition. The goal was to reach the top of a very high tower.

A big crowd had gathered around the tower to see the race and cheer on the contestants. The race began. No one in the crowd really believed the tiny frogs would reach the top of the tower.

Heard throughout the race were statements such as, “Oh, way too difficult,” “They will never make it to the top,” “Not a chance they will succeed,” and “The tower is too high.”

The tiny frogs began collapsing, one by one—except for those who, in a fresh tempo, were climbing higher and higher. The crowd continued to yell, “It is too difficult! No one will make it!”

More tiny frogs got tired and gave up. But ONE continued to climb higher and higher. This one refused to give up!

At the end of the race, all had given up climbing the tower except for the one tiny frog who, after a big effort, was the only one who reached the top!

All of the other tiny frogs wanted to know how this one frog managed to do it. They asked him how he had found the strength to succeed and reach the goal.

It turned out that the winning frog was DEAF!!!!

So what can we learn? The main point I would like to make is that we can all choose to be "deaf." That's right - we can choose to be "deaf" and "turn a deaf ear." The question is - how do we do it? We can choose ahead of time - beginning right now - that we will not listen to anyone - no one - who says negative things to us or utters discouraging words.

We can CHOOSE right NOW to:
  • be happy and
  • reach our goals no matter what anyone says.
When I learned this a while back it was one of the most liberating things, if not the most liberating things I ever discovered. Is this difficult? It can be, especially if you have been used to letting yourself be discouraged with everything every one says.

So how do you do it then?

CHOOSE to - right NOW. Remember that no one can rob you of your happiness or keep you from reaching your goals unless YOU give them permission. Life can only be grand if we CHOOSE to make it grand. I would also like to add that we can also CHOOSE not to let any outside circumstances get us down as well. CHOOSE today to be happy and to go for your dreams no matter what anyone says or no matter what happens. Is is possible? Just give it a try. It is a strong person who can turn a deaf ear. The rewards are innumerable!!

I would also like to add that not everyone is fortunate enough to know this lesson. To help them out, be a frog that says only encouraging positive words to others. The difference it can make can set the world on fire for good. Not only will the ones you encourage benefit, but the satisfaction it brings you will grow and warm your heart beyond measure.

Recommended reading:

The Choice

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A Machine That Can Identify Bad Coffee By Smelling It

This machine, developed by chemical engineers, can taste the quality in your cup of espresso, and can identify coffee types nearly as accurately as a panel of trained human espresso tasters.

read more | digg story

Monday, February 11, 2008

The 80/20 Rule of Time Management and Life

I came across this information and am not sure where it came from, but it most certainly sounds like Brian Tracy's information since it mentions the phrase "eat that frog" which Brian Tracy talks a lot about.

I found this to be a very eye opening and informative article on time and life management that I am going to consider and practice now. It really makes you consider how you're spending your time and life.


The 80/20 Rule is one of the most helpful of all concepts of time and life management. It is also called the “Pareto Principle” after its founder, the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, who first wrote about it in 1895. Pareto noticed that people in his society seemed to divide naturally into what he called the “vital few”, the top 20 percent in terms of money and influence, and the “trivial many”, the bottom 80 percent.

He later discovered that virtually all economic activity was subject to this principle as well. For example, this principle says that 20 percent of your activities will account for 80 percent of your results, 20 percent of your customers will account for 80 percent of your sales, 20 percent of your products or services will account for 80 percent of your profits, 20 percent of your tasks will account for 80 percent of the value of what you do, and so on. This means that if you have a list of ten items to do, two of those items will turn out to be worth five or ten times or more than the other eight items put together.

Number of Tasks versus Importance of Tasks
Here is an interesting discovery. Each of the ten tasks may take the same amount of time to accomplish. But one or two of those tasks will contribute five or ten times the value of any of the others.

Often, one item on a list of ten tasks that you have to do can be worth more than all the other nine items put together. This task is invariably the frog that you should eat first.

Focus on Activities, Not Accomplishments
The most valuable tasks you can do each day are often the hardest and most complex. But the payoff and rewards for completing these tasks efficiently can be tremendous. For this reason, you must adamantly refuse to work on tasks in the bottom 80 percent while you still have tasks in the top 20 percent left to be done.

Before you begin work, always ask yourself, “Is this task in the top 20 percent of my activities or in the bottom 80 percent?”

The hardest part of any important task is getting started on it in the first place. Once you actually begin work on a valuable task, you will be naturally motivated to continue. A part of your mind loves to be busy working on significant tasks that can really make a difference. Your job is to feed this part of your mind continually.

Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time

Motivate Yourself
Just thinking about starting and finishing an important task motivates you and helps you to overcome procrastination. Time management is really life management, personal management. It is really taking control of the sequence of events. Time management is having control over what you do next. And you are always free to choose the task that you will do next. Your ability to choose between the important and the unimportant is the key determinant of your success in life and work.

Effective, productive people discipline themselves to start on the most important task that is before them. They force themselves to eat that frog, whatever it is. As a result, they accomplish vastly more than the average person and are much happier as a result. This should be your way of working as well.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

7 Rules for Success

Michael Lee's 7 Rules for Success:

  1. Value your time more than money.
  2. Set realistic goals and make sure to write them down!
  3. Give unconditionally and show gratitude.
  4. Focus on one thing at a time.
  5. Always be hungry for knowledge, and act on what you've learned.
  6. Affirm and visualize your desires.
  7. Never listen to anyone who says "you can't do it."

Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude

Friday, February 8, 2008

The 6th Time Management Law

As a continuation of of the last post we'll take a look at the 6th law of time management and quiet possibly the most important.

Evaluation - We talked about analyzing things as you go throughout the day, but let's take that a step further. At the end of each day take a look at your list of time wasters and evaluate yourself on how you did. Mentally go through each part of your day and see how you can make improvements. Commit to do better each and every day and becoming more and more conscious of time management and eliminating time wasters and replacing them with things that work toward your goals until it is second nature to you.

What we're talking about here is replacing bad habits with good habits. The result will be peace of mind and extra time to do the fun things in life and not feel guilty about them.

Goals! How to Get Everything You Want--Faster Than You Ever Thought Possible

5 Laws of Time Management

It seems as though everyone struggles with time management. There just aren't enough hours in the day we often say. Try these laws to keep you focused.

1. Know where you're going.
Write down a mission statement, goals and priorities. Keep these with you at all times. Review them at least twice daily. Without a plan, every moment will be a waste.

2. Recognize that each and every moment is a gift from God that is to be used toward your mission statement, goals and priorities and for His glory.

3. Analyze everything you do as you go throughout your day.
Does each thing fit into your mission statement, goals and priorities? If so great. If not, do away with it and replace it with something that does.

4. Become conscious of time wasters.
Most everyone participates in them. They will be different for each person. The little ones all add up to make a large chunk of time. Lingering in the shower or at the breakfast table, deciding what to wear, reading junk mail, or email forwards are just a few some people participate in. Make a list of yours. Work to eliminate them once you recognize them.

5. Be wise, but don't structure your life to that you don't enjoy the little things.
Take time to smell the flowers, soak in the sunsets, and spend time with family. It will rejuvenate you to work toward your mission statement, goals and priorities.

Goals! How to Get Everything You Want--Faster Than You Ever Thought Possible