Posts Tagged ‘Empowerment’

Choose To Live YOUR Optimal Life

March 26, 2012

 It can be easy to get trapped into the “should’s” society and the media can put upon us which can lead to living with the results of other people’s thinking. Everyone has their own opinions, don’t allow their opinions to smother your own beliefs, values and most of all that inner voice, your intuition. Your intuition is what keeps you aligned on your true path and by following your true path you will find your life purpose. Once you have found your life purpose begin to live it with passion. This will take a huge amount of courage to follow your passion, your hearts true desires.

Your heart and your intuition somehow already know what you truly want to become. It just requires that you can be silent and listen. This will empower you to always be true to yourself and keep following your dreams. Remember to keep passion and faith as your guide and never stop believing in yourself. Stay inspired by choosing lifestyle choices that fully support you to become your best self. Take great care in your Whole Self through healthy lifestyle choices in nutrition, creative movement each day, quiet time/solitude and most of all enjoying your work. When we take the best care of our whole self we feel our best self. This empowers us to follow our intuition and live our life purpose with passion. It is time to discover and become your optimal self!

 What are the consequences of when we do not live our life purpose? Often that is when we are feeling frustrated and that day to day life is a major struggle. What are the signs and messages that are trying so hard to get our attention and tell us we are not on our life path? Situations such as the break-up of a relationship that was toxic anyway? Or maybe getting fired from a stressful or frustrating job. Or maybe a physical ailment keeps showing up such as headaches and this could be your body’s way of trying to tell you that you are not in the right situation, you are not living your life purpose. We all have an inner knowing of when we are not in alignment with our true self and we all have been blessed with a strong inner knowing of when we are in alignment with our true self. We feel this rightness with the World when we seem to be “in the flow of life”. Many times this can happen when being fully present with the task at hand or caught up in the present moment. Or feeling uplifted after helping someone who was dealing with what appeared to be a crisis. This feeling of being in the flow of life should be present in our careers as well, showing us confirmation that we are on our true path and living our life purpose.

Our time here on Earth is short and fast. You are here for a reason. Find that purpose and live it with passion. Believe in yourself and the world will, too.

© 2009 Nancy Hovde Read more Inspiration Uber Empowerment Books

Create True Changes

March 18, 2012

True change happens when we spend time and resources towards developing our minds & spirits, examining our core values & letting go of issues that may be holding us back from being our uber best in life.

We have the freedom to choose which choices to make each day. We can choose lifestyle choices that lead to feeling our best, thinking our best and being our best. Or we can choose those choices that lead to us to feeling unfulfilled and discouraged.

Is there anything you are doing regularly that does not support your highest good? How could this be tweaked to better support your well-being? While we can only reflect on our actions in the past; we can choose our actions for the present. Here are some action steps you can begin now.

  • Create a strong reason to remind yourself why you want to make a change. Ask yourself what you want more of in your life? Then ask yourself, what is it you are trying to avoid having in your life? Reminding yourself what you don’t want can be a strong motivator in keeping you in alignment with your commitment. Then focus on what you do want to see in your life and how you  will feel with having this new change in your life.
  • Visualizing and using positive affirmations can inspire you and keep you motivated especially during any weak moments.
  • Rewarding yourself along the way can inspire you to do more and go that extra mile to achieve the main goal.

You have the freedom to be who you want to be. Keep believing your path is important and keep telling yourself all the reasons why you can succeed. Expect only the best to happen. Believe it and you’ve just achieved it. Through out your day empower yourself by believing in yourself and your abilities. What you believe you will manifest.

Read Uber Empowerment Books.

Exercise Creates a Healthier YOU!

March 10, 2012

Beach

I have learned that progress in anything takes first believing in yourself, then creating an action plan, followed with effort. During life’s most challenging times exercise has always been my anchor for my physical, mental and spiritual health. When we workout regularly, we are much more in tune with our bodies. Exercise benefits our brain power, improves our moods, helps keep depression away and allows us to develop a deeper connection with our inner-spirit. Exercise can help us feel more positive about life and can help us create more meaningful relationships with others.

Sadly, some of us do not enjoy working out and are not receiving the maximum benefits that exercise can provide us. Some of us even experience a phase where we are no longer motivated and fall off track. Exercise isn’t just for physical health benefits. When we can learn to experience the feeling that our body, mind and spirit are one, there is no more resistance.

As a lifestyle coach, I share with my clients how the mind and conscience work together on sending signals to our feelings and our feelings help us become aware of how a movement or exercise can make us feel in the moment, right now. Noticing that movement and how the movement feels can be very enlightening. Any creative movement done with the right mental focus and movement can support an overall sense of well being.

I had just finished a yoga session with Michelle Chant, owner of Yogis at Home, www.yogisathome.com and was reflecting on how yoga, weight training, walking, running and all exercise can offer a new way of embracing exercise, a way of living and moving in our bodies that feels good, natural, effortless. We can see effective results when we choose a type of exercise that is fun and makes us feel good on all levels.

Have you ever thought about how effort equals strength? I have found this to be true when my body has pumped and stretched to get up those difficult hills in Palos Verdes, my mind is learning about how effort equals strength. This is an incredibly empowering feeling that I’ve carried over into other areas of my life when difficult situations arise. Each time I climb these difficult hills I notice progress. Progress motivates me to do it again. During life’s challenges, I’ve noticed when I am feeling my best and feeling strong physically, mentally I’m more confident and somewhere deep inside my soul I am able to carry a quiet inner strength.

So if exercise isn’t your thing or you’ve become bored with your same routine, I suggest trying something new that will be fun and challenging where you can track your progress. Often when we choose to try a new sport or exercise we begin to get re-inspired to take the best care of ourselves and to view exercise with all its benefits in a more holistic way and it effects or mind, body and soul.

Here are a few ideas to get re-inspired:

  • Running – mix it up: sand runs, treadmill, indoor track, outdoor track, hills, parks, beaches. Go solo and enjoy listening to your tunes, or go with a friend or group – keep it mixed up, fun and interesting. The Village Runner in Redondo Beach has group runs each week.

  • Hiking – can be very meditative to connect with nature, can be fun with a group or quality time spent with a friend. There are several trails in Palos Verdes for hiking.

  • Walking – indoors on a treadmill and mix up the incline/intensity, walking out doors in a park or on the beach, walking meditation listening to a walking medication CD.

  • Roller blade/roller skate – listen to tunes by yourself or ask a friend to join you. The Esplande in Redondo Beach offers beautiful views along the ocean.

  • Yoga – try a different style of Yoga each week! This could be through a class at your health club or finding a Yoga studio in your area. Another option might be to check out a DVD at the Redondo Beach Library and try out different styles of Yoga; then buy the DVD’s or join a yoga studio that focuses on the styles of Yoga that you connect with best.

  • Bike ride outside or for inside set the stationary bike on an interval training session. Spin classes offer a great workout for a indoor workout. Fitness Evolution in Redondo Beach offers several spin classes daily.

  • Stairs – outside or for inside set the stair machine on interval training or try setting the stair machine on the fat burning session to keep things mixed up.

  • Pilates – Spectrum Club in Redondo Beach offers several Pilates classes. You might also consider checking out a Pilates DVD at the library or signing up with one of the Pilates Studios in the South Bay.

  • Dance – a night out with friends dancing or take up a community dance course/lessons like salsa, line dancing, ballet, jazz to name just a few through the South Bay Adult School www.southbayadult.org

  • Create your own workout using body sculpting, static resistance training and strength training – in a class, with a private trainer or by applying a mixture of exercises you discovered while reading a health and fitness magazines such as South Bay Fit.

  • Martial Arts or Tai Chi – sometimes a gym or health club will offer these or a local studio. Elite Training Center in Redondo Beach offers martial arts group classes. Often Tai Chi classes are held outdoors in a park or on the beach. Tai Chi Redondo has several class times available. www.taichiredondo.com

  • Circuit Training indoors or outdoors. If outdoors, try Veterans Park or down on the beach in Redondo and use the benches for step ups, lunges, push ups and use any of the stairs along the Esplande to climb – get creative, think play, have fun! You could even include using a trampoline for rebounding in your backyard, which is really good for the lymphatic system. Use a jump rope in between your sets of push ups, crunches, lunges.

  • Enjoy your favorite sport or activity – maybe it is golf with friends, a game of soccer, windsurfing, snow skiing or maybe you enjoy horseback riding or gardening.

  • Hire a personal trainer to motivate and re-inspire you. Riviera Fitness Club in Redondo Beach has one-on-one, partner or small group fitness training.

Just considering exercise or trying something new won’t be enough to see progress. Ultimately, it is action that will make the difference. Next on my list is trying Half & Half Pilates Jump Board & TRX with Tracy at Body & Mind Coe-Dynamics. I even took action this past week and stopped into Body and Mind Coe-dynamics Pilates Studio in Manhattan Beach and picked up a class schedule. I am feeling excited about seeing the progress results!

Read Uber Empowerment Books.

Accountability is Empowering

March 4, 2012

 Arranging for success is creating a solution and empowering yoruself through accountability.

Do you find yourself excited to start something, get half way through or even nearly complete something only to find yourself not finishing what you started? Many times the reason for quitting something before we finish is we feel bored or something isn’t as convenient anymore. Sometimes we feel so overwhelmed we feel like quitting.

Developing a strong solution focused approach is key. Using a solid framework for the process that offers support and motivation for your purpose and desired outcome as well as holding yourself accountable to your commitments, goals and action plan can help you effectively complete a project or goal.

Accountability can be empowering. One can choose a new project to begin and develop the knowledge, experience and even the skill, but it is the willingness with an action plan and accountability that determines if one truly succeeds with their intentions, goals and dreams. I truly believe that we can finish the project or reach a goal when we have the focus, plan of action steps and hold ourselves accountable while working towards completion.

What is accountability? Accountability is a traditional, old fashioned method that says you are answerable for your actions. It is the responsibility of your actions and decisions including the implementation within the scope of your role or job description (from a career stand point), it is the obligation to report, explaining and be answerable for resulting consequences.

Now, let’s take a look at what is considered unaccountable. A unaccountable person is someone you can easily recognize because they use blaming others, excuses, procrastinate, act confused or ignorant when confronted about why something did not get done, they do the bare minimum required. They will use phrases and words such as “How should I know, it is not MY job”. Or “I was never told I had to”. And “I did not know”. Unaccountable people are slow to act.

Sometimes, you may have the best of intentions yet still do not do what needs to be done, to get to where you want to be. This may be because you procrastinated, took fewer action steps. When you have either someone to hold you accountable for your goals or you choose to use a method of progress to hold yourself accountable in achieving your intentions you will find that the benefits are:

  • More clarity, focused
  • Less Procrastination
  • Fewer Stops
  • Achievement of results you only dreamed could be possible
  • More balanced and fulfilling life
  • More satisfying relationships

Being accountable is one of the fastest ways to earn respect and trust and feel empowered in your life. When you choose to respond to a method of accountability this gives you control of your life and the power to change things in your life.

Here are some general questions you can use to check in weekly with yourself and see your progress or have a friend hold you accountable for your goals and ask you these questions weekly:

  • What is one action step you are doing with your goal that is working?
  • What makes this action step work so well for you?
  • What would your goal be like if it was perfect?
  • What is missing, which if it were present, would make your goal be perfect?
  • What action steps can you take to put in what’s missing and have your perfect goal manifest in your life?
  • Will you commit to doing that?
  • What in the past has gotten in the way or has stopped you from keeping your commitment?
  • What do you need to have present or put in place, today, to support you in keeping your commitment?
  • In what ways has committing to the action steps in the past week made you more valuable?
  • How have committing to the action steps and accountability method allowed you to feel more empowered?

The above action and accountability questions will help support you in reaching your goals. You may find that all of the questions or just a few of the questions best support you. Choose those questions that resonate with you, that inspire you and motivate you to hold yourself accountable in reaching your goals. Remember, you can always hire a lifestyle coach or seek out a friend to hold you accountable to as well, until you feel you have developed a positive habit of action and accountability.

That vision you’ve set for yourself, commit to pursuing specific steps and you will achieve. You will get there! 

Read more Inspiration Uber Empowerment Books.

Writing for Inner Awareness: Stay Focused on YOUR Path

February 21, 2012

I find that writing activities such as journaling help create more inner awareness, which allows for more peace and harmony. I keep a gratitude journal, and I write in it daily.

Writing for inner awareness can be done on a laptop, in a traditional journal, on a phone, whatever. I like a journal.

Choosing a comfortable location where I’m unlikely to be interrupted helps create a therapeutic experience. Nature or a beautiful location can provide inspiration for writing and thought processing. One of my favorite places is Veterans Park, overlooking the ocean.

I also write just before I go to sleep each night. I reflect on my day and think of a minimum of five things to be thankful for. I might also write about a pleasant surprise I may have had, such as unexpectedly running into an old friend.

Some days are more challenging and I may just feel like writing down the basics, simple things such as gratitude for my health and my family’s health or gratitude for the delicious dinner I enjoyed.

I have noticed that when I take time to give thanks and appreciation for all the good things in my life, I seem to experience more happiness and positive moments.

Another activity that can help clear your mind and keep you guided on your true path is to sit down and write in order to process the thoughts going through your head. This can be in the morning, in the middle of the day—anytime you are sensing too many things on your mind and feel you are missing out on the quality of your day.

I have actually, while driving, pulled over on a side street and grabbed my notebook and pen and begun to write.

Silly as it may sound, so many thoughts will go through my head, including, “I need to get my carpet cleaned,” or, “Did I remember to return my client’s call?’ or, “Should I call up my friend Sheila for dinner plans for tonight?”

When we are caught up in these thoughts, we are not experiencing life fully and in the moment. I call this scattered thoughts or scattered energy. Even though these thoughts are not negative, they are still pulling us away from enjoying ourselves.

When we are in the moment, we are enjoying life and more aware of everything around us.

Be in the moment more often. It is easy to get out of balance more than it is to stay balanced. But if you want it, it can be done. Do you want it?

With consistency, practice, patience, doing each thing with mindfulness, and having the ultimate will, you’ll find yourself enjoying each moment more often and knowing you are living a high quality of life.

Writing also works when you have to make a choice and are having a difficult time figuring out which choice is best. Once you start writing, let the words flow. Stream of consciousness.

Don’t worry about spelling and grammar. This is for your eyes only. If you are angry with someone, or hurt, write down whatever it is you feel and wish you could say.

Tear up the paper when you are done, if you like. You will feel better just having gotten things out of you and onto paper, which also provides clarity.

Writing can bring inner awareness to what your core needs and beliefs are and whether you are paying attention to those needs and making them a priority in your life. This will get you back on track, centered and balanced, and keep you on your true path.

Read more inspiration Uber Empowerment Books.

Share how writing in a journal has helped you in processing life’s challenges and experiences.

 

Are You Too Cautious?

February 14, 2012

I had just finished my run in Palos Verdes and was standing at the intersection on Palos Verdes Boulevard and Catalina Avenue in Redondo Beach when that word popped up for what seemed like the third time this week. Cautious. I overheard a couple who had seen me cross in the cross walk and the car that drove in front of me when I was only half way through the cross walk. As a pedestrian, I had the right away. This couple shared their experience when they drove into this same cross walk while a pedestrian had just stepped off the curb and they were given a ticket. Ever since this experience, they are both more cautious. This type of caution makes sense, being a safe driver and following the road rules and laws is necessary.

However, being cautious in life happens in various ways. A friend of mine experienced being cautious after a fall during a trail run due to the uneven terrain. Now, she only runs on flat surfaces such as on the Strand. She admits her runs are always the same route now and no longer mixed with different scenic trails, but at least she feels safe.

There are many situations in life that will cause us to become more cautious. It could be from a financial struggle, relationship issues or some type of alarming experience. These are times that we can certainly learn from. But sometimes we can become too cautious in life and we begin to feel stuck or limited from moving forward into becoming our full potential in life. When we are presented with an opportunity, challenge, problem or obstacle it is important to not focus on the dark negative side of everything.

Perhaps you find yourself weighing out the consequences of every action, every decision and this leaves you hesitant, second guessing and so you procrastinate, put things off or maybe you simple don’t do anything. It is normal to feel nervous about making a change, taking a risk and moving out of your comfort zone. Feeling nervous doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try something new. Sometimes it can help to focus on the facts at this time instead of your feelings about making a change. Taking time to carefully consider the facts will help you to better decide whether a course of action is right for you.

As a lifestyle empowerment coach, I have explained to my clients that the mind makes things so much scarier than they actually are. Often it is more of the anticipation of the unknown outcome that is keeping us stuck in our comfort zone than our desire to try something new.  It can be encouraging to start with one challenge, opportunity or obstacle at a time. Recognize that even just attempting to face a fear head on can help to move you out of your comfort zone. Become aware that even if your fear isn’t totally cured you can accept that no matter what the outcome -whether you win, loose or regardless …  You will develop more courage, faith and a stronger belief in yourself. Your personal growth does wonders for your self-confidence and will remind you that anything is possible when you embrace stretching yourself beyond your comfort zone.

Yes, you may cautiously begin to say yes and do things that previously would leave you stuck in your safe world of monotony. It can help to go at your own pace. Just because you are deciding to make a change, take a risk or try something new doesn’t mean you have to go full force. Take one step at a time, wait and see the results and then take that second step. As you begin to feel more comfortable and confident, you will begin to take larger risks.

Begin to live life more fully that will allow your mind and heart to discover all the amazing possibilities out there.

Read Uber Empowerment Books.

 

Empower Others Through Listening

February 4, 2012

Sometimes, simply listening to a friend talk about her problems can be more empowering for your friend than offering advice.

I was headed to the beach for my morning run and as I passed through Veterans Park, I overheard a woman consoling her friend, telling her how horrible she must be feeling and how badly she wished she could fix her friend’s problem. I’m not sure if this is what her friend really needed to hear at the time, and it made me wonder if this type of comment really made the friend feel better—or worse?

I can recall a few times in life when I had someone there for me to offer support or to bounce ideas off of and bring me back into focus. I think of my parents, siblings and closest friends who’ve been so supportive.

All of us need support from time to time. Have you ever received support from a coach, friend, family member or co-worker that seem to radiate like a beam of sunshine, driving you into the right action? Perhaps this allowed you to move forward and make a decision that you courageously chose for yourself—all because you knew you had their support behind whatever choice you made. Maybe it was a result of the right questions a friend asked you at the time, or you just knew you had your family’s full support in all your endeavors.

On the flip side, maybe you have shared a dilemma with a friend in hopes of feeling better and adopting a more positive attitude, only to find you felt worse than you did before you opened up to your friend. Your friend may have said something such as, “Oh, you poor thing! I can’t believe that happened to you. You must feel just horrible. I wish I could fix that for you.” Your friend’s well-meaning intentions of offering sympathy left you feeling down, negative and disempowered.

We’ve all fallen into the victim mode before, whether we were the one trying to offer sympathy or we were the one receiving it. It can be tempting over-sympathize when someone we care about is suffering; however, this is not positive support.

Instead, we can choose to listen compassionately to someone’s dilemma, bring hot soup to a sick friend or offer a fresh perspective on a challenging situation.

The key is when offering support, we want the receiver to feel loved, encouraged and empowered. This way, we are helping them to make a positive choice, take positive action and come out of their situation quickly—not stay stuck.

Here are some tips to help empower someone who is seeking support:

  • Focus on the person’s positive strengths. Choose to help them rise to a higher level by offering empathy and compassion. We can be present for someone’s pain or suffering and help them remember their inner strengths and positive resources. Often, this can be the best gift to someone who is struggling. I once told a longtime friend of mine, “You are such a strong, positive person. I know you will pull through this and come out wiser.” You can only imagine how this encouraging comment was the ticket to her finding a re-inspired perspective on her situation and life.
  • We may understand exactly how someone is feeling because we have gone through a very similar experience before; however, this doesn’t mean we will fix this person’s problem for them. We can feel what they are going through because we’ve been there, too. We can allow our experience to help empower this person. I recently ran into a friend of mine at Starbucks in the Peninsula Center in Rolling Hills Estates. The last time I had seen her, she was going through one of life’s most difficult situations, and I could very much relate, having gone through something similar. I have always seen her as a fully functional human being who will know the next step that needs to be taken. I can recall, at the time she was going through her dilemma, I told her: “I sense your struggling right now, and I’m sorry you have to go through this. What are you going to do?” Now, my friend is happy and has moved on from the challenging situation and seems to be quite positive, wiser and self-empowered.
  • Listening without judgment offers empathy. We’ve all been taught to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. Don’t, however, try to fix their problem for them. Listening with compassion and allowing them to share their feelings helps them get it out, which may be all they need from you at this time. When you listen, you offer empathy, which can allow them to feel better and choose empowering action, whereas sympathy tends to focus on reacting—sometimes to the point where we take on their feelings and feel their pain. We are not meant to suffer along with others; we need to remember that their painful situations will assist their self-growth.
  • Asking questions helps them talk more about their feelings and focus on their own solution. Nevertheless, sometimes when we offer advice and solutions, we are not doing them a favor in any way—and we can even make them feel disempowered. No self-growth can take place for them. Instead of telling them what to do, listen, ask a few questions and guide them toward what they feel is the right answer or next step to take. How empowered have you felt when you were in a difficult situation and had the opportunity to express your feelings and come up with your own solution? Remember to do this next time you find yourself in contact with someone who is struggling.
  • Check in with them. Sending a quick email might help lighten their mood. Remind them to see the humorous side of the situation. Providing humor and encouragement can be an excellent supportive gesture for some of us. I was having a conversation with a friend at Lido di Manhattanwhen the friend reminded me to remember the humor in life’s challenges. Nevertheless, just as humor can be the therapeutic dose for some, love and positive thoughts can be what is needed for others. Just knowing that someone is thinking positive thoughts about you can be the perfect supportive remedy for some.

Each situation calls for different types of support and encouragement. Often we may not know much about the challenges someone is facing, but offering to be available to listen to them may be all that is needed. Who knows, it might be the best gift we can offer them at the time.

Read Uber Empowerment Books.

New Year Brings New Opportunities

February 1, 2012

Taking advantage of new opportunities—whether it’s a new job, new project or something else—helps us grow in life.

I was eating lunch at Creme de la Crepe in Riviera Village when I overheard a conversation between a couple. They were wondering whether should move forward with an opportunity. Was the timing right? How would they know if they are making the right choice? Were they only excited because this was a new opportunity for the new year?

There something refreshing about a brand new year and the exciting opportunities it brings! Do you act on opportunities? Life often tosses us opportunities with a window of time to act—or not.

Nobody ever feels 100 percent ready when an opportunity arises. Because most great opportunities in life force us to grow beyond our comfort zones, we won’t feel totally comfortable at first.

Do you see yourself as too cautious, someone who only does what he or she has always done to stay within a comfort zone? By not taking chances, we miss the opportunity to accomplish all the amazing things we are really are capable of.

Here are some tips to help you recognize and seize opportunities:

  • Stop trying to be a perfectionist or waiting for the perfect time. Waiting for the perfect time or trying to become a perfectionist for anything new often masks procrastination. If you find yourself saying, “I’ll start the project one of these days,” you are procrastinating. Instead, set a date for each action stop along the way. Perhaps you need to learn some new skills for this opportunity; deciding on dates and action plans creates a road map to the point where you’ve achieved what you want. The key is to keep the momentum strong when the idea or opportunity first presents itself. Creating small steps along the way will keep the goal in sight.
  • Sometimes you need to learn to become more assertive in order to seize the opportunities life tosses your way. If you don’t try, you are guaranteed not achieve what you want. It is necessary to take risks when seizing opportunities. Remember, you do not need other people’s approval when a goal or opportunity has deep meaning for you.
  • Having a clear picture of what you want and knowing your values in life well help you recognize when an opportunity presents itself. This helps you know which opportunities to take and which ones to leave alone. Ask yourself, does this bring me closer or take me farther away from my ultimate goal? What are the costs involved? How will this help me benefit and in what ways will I grow?
  • It is easy to be fearful of trying something new or taking on a new adventure without knowing what obstacles may come up along the way or the eventual outcome. Making mistakes is part of learning what does and doesn’t work. No matter how bad the mistake may have been, feel positive about yourself because you took a chance.
  • Nothing seems to hold us back more than our negative thoughts. It can help to remember that our negative thoughts are not facts—they are just thoughts. Assumptions can create negative thoughts. Worrying is a complete waste of time and energy because most of the negative thoughts or assumptions we make never happen anyway.

Take a look around for opportunities—even small ones. You never know where they may lead you. Read Uber Empowerment books.

Perseverance Brings Positive Results

January 25, 2012

Despite early setbacks, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. persevered and initiated change. Like King, if at first we don’t succeed, we should try and try again.

As I was walking out of South Bay Galleria, I overheard a child discussing a school project with his mother. He was explaining how much he admired Martin Luther King Jr. because he carried out his plan—even when the going got tough.

Many of us have an appreciation for Dr. King, and we know that if he were here today, he would encourage us to persevere as he did over a generation ago.

Last week, we looked at how assumptions can sometimes cause misunderstandings, confusion and undue stress—which can make us feel discouraged and keep us from reaching our goals or strengthening relationships. It takes perseverance to avoid making assumptions and achieve what we want in relationships and life success.

I had a conversation with a friend of mine while dining at Mama Terano in Rolling Hills Estates about perseverance. Over time, it can either be more challenging or easier to continue our goals with perseverance based on past experiences. Negative experiences may limit the amount of perseverance within; however, if we choose to learn the lesson from a challenging experience then we will be better equipped to take on our future goals.

When striving for a new goal, one of the most challenging obstacles may be bearing the difficulties calmly and without complaining. Limit assumptions and allow perseverance to inspire you to achieve the results you want. Here are a few tips:

  • When something starts to bother you, wait as long as you possibly can before giving into frustration or losing your temper. Expressing our feelings in a tactful way is important. Write about past challenging situations that you overcame in your journal. What were your feelings at the time?
  • If something does not seem to be working properly, give it another try. And another! Don’t give up so easily. Adopt the motto “Always finish what you start” and allow this to motivate you to completion.
  • Do you always get annoyed or lose your patience with a specific person? Take a moment to try to understand the person’s behavior. Use this as an opportunity to work through a challenge instead of trying to avoid or escape it.

Through his commitment, hard work, patience and perseverance, Dr. King achieved great things. Like Dr. King, sometimes we must try again and again to reach our goal.

Find more inspiration Uber Empowerment Books. Get a sneak peek   Uber Empowering Quotes in this video.

 

Stop Making Assumptions

January 18, 2012

Assumptions, though easy, can hurt us in the long run.
As I got situated in the Redondo Beach Main Library one day, I began going through my text messages and noticed I hadn’t heard back from my dad in several days. This is unusual; we text nearly every day. I assumed he was receiving all my updates via my text messages to my mom.

Meanwhile, my dad could not figure out why I was not responding to his text messages. It was during my visit for the holidays that we finally figured it out: the last digit in my phone number had been deleted from his phone—which made it impossible to receive his text messages for several weeks.

Both of us were incorrect with our assumptions about why we weren’t receiving each other’s messages!

What causes us to make assumptions? Perhaps we do this because we’re busy and it’s easy; we categorize and assume things so we can understand issues and act quickly. We impatiently jump to conclusions or make assumptions—and this causes us undue stress.

Whatever item—be it a memory, an emotion or something else—we link to an incident or idea is what it becomes. Although some of our past events may have created great memories and instilled confidence, others work against us, limiting our talents and skills. Realize these circumstances are now in the past.

The mind believes only what we allow it to accept and reacts only to how it has been conditioned. Our beliefs are those we have formed. Whether right or wrong, they make up the system we act on, but it is never too late to change. Stop making assumptions. Learn to become aware of when you are making assumptions and understand how they can cause misunderstandings with these tips:

Get into the habit of asking yourself, “What assumptions am I making?” Check in with yourself before allowing your imagination to run wild about things that frustrate you. This will save you from unnecessary drama. It is easy to take your untrue assumptions personally. By assuming something, you could create a misunderstanding with another person.
Listen to your internal mental chatter—it’s creating assumptions. Try some divergent thinking exercises like brainstorming, mind mapping or writing in your journal. These types of exercises can help expand your critical thinking while keeping you from making false assumptions. The exercises are also a great way to break some bad mental habits and reduce negative inner chatter. I often head to Abalone Cove Beach in Rancho Palos Verdes to focus on divergent thinking exercises when my mind is overwhelmed with unclear assumptions. I walk along the shoreline there, decompress and then sit awhile and write down my thoughts on paper.
When in doubt, ask and double check. This one may sound simple because it is; however, many times we just don’t take the initiative and ask or double check. My dad simply could have called me to ask if I was receiving his text messages; I could have called him to see if he was extra busy and just receiving my updates through my mom (as I was assuming he was). Many of us may become passive in a similar situation as this; we may actually fear asking the question or questions that need to be asked. This could be because of an unpleasant past experience, and we are assuming the experience could repeat itself.
Try not to automatically make assumptive shortcuts just because you think you know someone well. Even if you’ve known someone for years, it doesn’t mean they will respond or react as they have in the past. Trying to interpret what someone will do or say can be disrespectful of that person’s feelings, needs or values. Recall a time when someone made false assumptions about you—how do you feel? Resist the urge to accept stereotypes. Even though many times stereotypes might be quite accurate, they tend to cloud our judgment.
Consider asking yourself, “When does making my assumptions cause me unnecessary frustrations, and what can I do about it?” When you find yourself in a similar situation you’ve faced in the past, it is easy to revert to the way you did before. Nevertheless, the similar situation probably has different people in it, and they will react differently. Use a few minutes to take a deep breath, clear your mind and ask questions that will help you gather the facts and information you need. Ask open questions to clarify assumptions such as the who, what, when, where and how.
Making assumptions can actually hinder us from reaching our goals in life. Assumptions can keep us from having the courage to acknowledge what it is we need. Last week, we learned how we make our choices and how those choices can influence where we are currently in our life. Now that we have explored more about how making assumptions can lead to misunderstandings, let’s keep this knowledge in mind as we move forward this year.
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