75 Questions: Day 9

There are only 75 days before the start of a new Gregorian calendar year. So, for the next 66 days (Monday – Sunday) the blog postings will ask one question. That question may inspire you, it may perplex you, it may anger you, or it may tickle you. The whole thrust of the 75 questions is to prompt a reaction and honest answer to the probe.

The fundamental intent of the 75 questions is to capture change.  Each question should be a catalyst for inner change that leaves you feeling more dynamic, powerful, intrigued, and authentic. When these emotions are gradually opened up within you (they already exist), you change and your world changes and the whole world changes with you.

Post your answers, you will get a response to your replies and we will use these 75 questions to lift life as the year 2017 begins.

What do you know when you hear “Life is short”?

Monday Miracle: Stretch

“Mind is the master power that molds and makes and man is mind, and evermore he takes The tool of thought, and, shaping what he wills brings forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills.

He thinks in secret, and it comes to pass, environment is but his looking glass.”  ~James Allen

What is your mental achievement looking glass reflecting to you?

Write down what you see in your mind’s eye right now.  Then, write in a second column beside that list what you will do that will stretch your achievement before the end of the year.  A goal without a deadline is but an empty wish, a vague longing.

Success is about the definite-no wishy, willy-nilly cowdropping pretending.  Be specific and clear and write a deadline.  You may discover that you may need assistance from a mentor or role-model.  Well, do that. Make the call, send an email, schedule an appointment.  Do it today!

Stretch, feel good.  Move along your definite path of success.

Monday Miracle: Hate Well

“Do not tolerate the thing that you have a no-tolerance rule against.” ~Henry Cloud

There is such a thing as justifiable hatred.  Successful people know this and practice it judiciously.  To hate well means that there are some hard-fast character, social, and mental rules that you mark as inviolable.  You stand against racism or oppression no matter what.  You stand again lying or manipulation no matter what.  You stand against the act, not the person.

Dr. Henry Cloud, in his book 9 Things You Simply Must Do, writes that hating well always means that you have a loving or kind response to the person but evince a very strong stance on the issue.  Strong well placed hatred means unmovable, non-equivocal standards without meanness or malice toward the person.  In this way, strong non-judgmental values allow you to operate around the things that you hate without being infected by them while you work to remedy the situation or help someone.

Become a person who objectively chooses to hate well.  This allows you to discard the charged emotions that often damage or destroy the valued good you intend.  Then, you will preserve your integrity, shorten any stress, and contribute to well-being in your relationships.

Subjective hatred destroys.  When you choose to hate a person or an act and then react venomously, you are not separating what you value from either the person or situation.  Dr. Cloud says this is global hatred. In essence because you have been offended by a person, all people who look like that person or even more broadly is the same gender as the offender is treated malevolently.  Wrong!

Hate well instead.  Separate the charged emotions and previous pain you have internalized from the current person or situation that reminds you of a former space of injustice.  Subjective hatred often projects onto others angry, unjustified disdain and harsh judgment whereas objective hatred is precise in its assessment and addresses the infraction in ways that preserve the dignity of the person.

Hatred, as a healing and appropriate response to anything which infringes on your values, is good.  Either you stand for something or you perish for the lack of standing.  Those who hate poverty but not the impoverished hate well.  Those who hate hunger but not those who hunger hate well.  Those who hate profanity but do not curse the curser too hate well. 

Distinguish what you hate. Stand firm on the issue, and graciously on the person.

Tell us what you hate and how you make the choice to objectively hate well.  Send me your comments.

Monday Miracle: Finality

Success demands finality. Progress is determined by completion. Thus, progressive success is predicated upon finishing.  Equivocation, sitting on the fence does not bring closure.

Closure comes from finality. Making a final decision, checking off your lists of tasks, clearing clutter miraculously bridges the divide between getting things done with final flair or remaining in a vacillating vacuum.  Closure fights fear-you’ve done it. That final resolution, regardless of how painful or muddled the situation was, is a triumph that is stored in your soul and cannot be taken away.

Professor Hossein Arsham believes that “decisions are at the heart of leader success, and at times there are critical moments when they can be difficult, perplexing, and nerve-racking. However, the boldest decisions are the safest.”

checkmark

Finality is stimulating and is safe.  The more you finish, the more you will finish. Getting things done by reaching a final decision is restorative. Many people use vacillation or procrastination because they are afraid.

The what if? questions prompts wavering and doubt. Delaying decisions will only delay your peace of mind. Once you have made a final choice, that is done and over with-FINALLY! Keep your peace, make a decision and release fear and doubt.

Here is a tip to reach a final decision:

  • Play out the “what if?” scenario for a block of time. Make a decision tree. Decision-making experts say that this exercise can take from 15 minutes to a 1/2 day to multiple days depending on the complexity of the problem you are considering. Regardless of time frame, you will conclude with a final decision.

Finality is a breath of relief. Breathe deep, make a decision. Oh what a relief it is.

 

Monday Miracle: Visualization

Human Eye with different lines. The line of si...

Human Eye with different lines. The line of sight (middle) is the only one permitting a view with good acuity. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What do you see? How clear is your vision? How magnificent is your visualization?

In order  for your goals to materialize, you must have a vivid, electrifying visualization of what you want to achieve.  There are four parts of visualization – learn and assiduously practice each step every day to capture the incredible power of seeing what you want.

  1. Daily Diligence

The first step of visualization is daily practice, the frequency  that you visualize the achievement of your goal by seeing yourself in your mind’s eye accomplishing exactly what you want is the impetus you need to marshal your success. The more often you repeat a clear mental picture of your very best performance or the achievement of the goal, the more rapidly it will manifest as part of your reality.

2.  Duration

The second step of visualization is duration, how long you maintain your mental picture.  The length of  time that you can hold your visual image (it should not be a full n length movie) deepens your ability to attract what you need and see the actions required to complete your goal.  The duration depends on you, some may need more time to vividly see their achievement and others may only need seconds to inculcate their image. Take your time, do what serves your highest need.

 “Achievement, of whatever kind, is the crown of effort, the diadem of thought.” ~Elbert Hubbard

3.  Direction

The third step of visualization is direction. There is a direct, one-to-one relationship between how vividly clear you can see the direction of your goal or result in your mind and how quickly it comes into your reality. Your ability to directly cast the goal in your mind is what transmutes desire directly and determines how quickly your visual image materializes.

4.  Desire

The fourth element of visualization is intense desire, how badly do you want to achieve your goal. The intensity of your desire and the strength of the emotion that you attach to your visual image is vital to achievement. This is the most important and powerful part of the visualization process.

Visualization is a process, as is success. Work the process and it will work for you.

Vivid visualization + volition = success.

Write Your Success

There are as many pathways to success as there are people who dream of a better life, a better world.

(Photo courtesy of Mark Weiss/Corbis)

Success is a personal statement that one writes for his or her own life.   Only you can write your success statement, why not begin viewing success the write way?

Writing is one common denominator among those who share the prize of success. Successful people write. Documenting your thoughts and feelings helps you to bring them into a focus point so that you can execute them. Henriette Klauser in Write It Down, Make It Happen proposes writing to activate the RAS (Reticular Activation System) in your brain , the brain control center which sorts and evaluates data.

Writing about your success activates the RAS in your brain stem. Everybody has a RAS, actively use yours by writing your goals to target success.  RAS activation does not require convoluted contortions or regimented procedures. Writing for success should be simple, liberating.

Steps to Success Writing

  • Freeform, free flow.  Let your ideas germinate, let your mind flow. Just ramble. Write whatever thoughts come to mind.  Just doddle along. Otherwise, you may write about a specific situation or problem but don’t try to limit what comes to mind. At this point you are not looking for a solution, you are problem-solving in the abstract.
  • Make a list. Put on paper a column of what could or could not happen. Pros and cons – nothing more. Write your list to exhaustion, think of possibilities and probabilities or other options and then dig deeper to think of more. Written lists are an extremely useful problem-solving tool. Write your list, resolve the dilemma.
  • Write for an ending.  Success writing can bring closure. Whether you doddle, sketch or write longhand, you are writing to stretch your imagination. Take yourself to that often buried outcome that you have sequestered, usually due to fear that it is too daunting, improbable, and write the ending. Make your goal, no matter how deeply recessed, personal and alive by writing about it and what the achievement end will be.
  • Generate confidence. Success writing does not depend upon brawn or brain. What you are authoring as the coveted writer is for you. At this point you are acknowledging the premise and promise of your ideas; you are beginning to believe with assured confidence that success according to your connotation is not optional. When you write, you generate what it takes to make things happen.

The act of writing, instead of brain volleyball, is powerful. Committing your ideas to paper supersedes thinking or even talking about them. Writing documents what’s in your psyche and pushes you toward outward success that only you can imprint.

Solve problems, organize your thoughts, and document your goals using pen and paper. Write to resolve fears, build confidence, deal with grief, or sort out solutions. Whatever, just write.

Writing is cathartic; words on paper can guide your success.

Daily Dos

“Read, every day, something no one else is reading.

Think, every day, something no one else is thinking.

Do, every day, something no one else would be silly enough to do.

It is bad for the mind to be always part of unanimity.”   ~Christopher Morley

Rev Up Your Activation Energy

You are at your goal start line, rev your success engine. Only you can put the pedal on your life accelerator. Nobody else can rev   your engine, you alone must press the pedal that accelerates your life. Only you can drive the lane to your success.

This is a reality: YOU control your life pace. Many want to blame outside forces and rationalize external happenings as the reason they stall out at the start line. Others get started, but fail to maintain their goal lane because they are looking everywhere else to see what someone else is doing.  And then there are those who make it close to the goal line and stall out right there-completely out of gas because they did not plan for their success.

All of these defense mechanisms – blame, irrational rationalization, lack of focus, stalling, not planning – are all negative psychological tendencies that flatten your activation energy; the fuel that masters any goal. There is no way you will climb over obstacles to live a happy, fulfilled life when these energy barriers dominate your thinking.

Shawn Achor, seen on the PBS special program “The Happiness Advantage”, is a Harvard educated researcher on life fulfillment and happiness, asserts that “the real story of happiness is that every person has a range of potential — in terms of intelligence, athletic ability, musicality, creativity, and productivity — and we are more likely to achieve the upper bounds of our brain’s potential when we’re feeling positive, rather than negative or neutral.”

What can you do when you just float along? How far do you go when your energy is sapped? How happy do you really feel when your mind is clouded with worry and despair?

Your success and ultimate happiness depends on your ability to activate your energy. In fact, Mr. Achor says “long-term success is based upon your ability to positively adapt to the world: optimism, social support creation, and viewing stress as a challenge instead of as a threat.” This adaptive perspective is called your “activation energy.”

Regardless of where you are in your life, it is time to rev up your activation energy. Here’s how to rev up your activation energy:
1. Want more joy. You have to want more happiness and inner joy in your life. This first you step is the fulcrum of being joyful. You can be happy. You deserve to be happy.

2. Activate your energy. Now that you seek more joy and fulfillment in your life, it is time to actively pursue your happiness. Stop waiting around for someone to make you fell good. Go out and do the things that support your happiness and don’t stop until you feel joyful.

3. Disavow negativity. Get away from anyone or anything that disturbs your happiness. Take a “feelings” assessment: tune in to what and who feels good to you. When you find those energy drainers, and you definitely will, get rid of them.

4. Practice happiness. Give away your joy. Smile more, volunteer, sing, dance, fiddle, get in your zone. You will attract more and more happiness energy to play the harp of joy everyday in your life.

Activate your positive energy. Be happy. Take advantage of abundant joy-you deserve it.