Page 3 of 5

Thanksgiving 2014: A Mexican from Mexico’s Thanksgiving

If you have been following my blog for some time now, and In case you didn’t notice, I have been on a “let’s re-define and achieve success” kick lately. This kick is partly due to a focus on studying and understanding procrastination, productivity, success, and setting goals that work for you instead of against you.

Seeing as Thanksgiving 2014 is right around the corner (ok, more like tomorrow), I thought it fitting to explore the subject of gratitude and its direct relationship to success.

But alas, we have a problem… I have never celebrated Thanksgiving in the traditional American sense.

You see, unless you have read my about page, I don’t think you understand where I’m coming from. Literally speaking: where I am from.

Growing up in Mexico

Although I was born in the good ‘ol U.S. of A, I was actually raised in Mexico up until I was 15 years of age.  Thus, my formative years as a child were spent watching my mother watch Novelas (Mexican soap operas) in the local TV stations TV Azteca or Televisa, watching my family go crazy over futbol (otherwise known as soccer), and breaking piñatas at birthday parties.

SO… when friends and acquaintances my age speak of American pop culture from the ‘80s and 90’s, most of the time I have absolutely no idea what they are talking about.  I simply had a different experience growing up.

When Audrey Hepburn was the rage in the US, Maria Felix was her equivalent in Mexico.  If my American friends grew up watching Home Improvement or Family Matters, I was watching Don Francisco or El Chavo del 8 on Saturday nights with my family.

… And let’s not forget getting spanked with a chancla.

My experience growing up was not limited to experiencing pop culture with a Mexican flare, but it also included the Mexican perspective of holidays.

For example, Halloween was kind of a weird holiday not many wanted to partake in because Mexican culture saw it as a devil-worshipping sort of holiday… and god forbid good Catholics celebrate devil-worshipping holidays—yet children of all ages parade down the streets of Mexico in their Halloween costumes every single year.

Christmas was more or less celebrated across the board, but mostly because Jesus was born on that date, not because Santa Clause would squeeze down our non-existent chimneys to deliver gifts.  I understand that the birth of Jesus Christ is mostly the reason why people celebrate Christmas in the U.S. too, but man, do advertisers milk the Santa Clause story for what it’s worth, or what?

Then there was Easter.  Growing up Catholic I had no idea what Easter is.  Don’t get me wrong, I was supposed to know, I just didn’t have a clue because we hardly ever stepped inside a church.  Fortunately for me, the American culture has done a grand job at making Easter more memorable for me by including pink rabbits and colored eggs into their celebrations.

Then there is Thanksgiving.  I had never even heard of this holiday until I moved to the US.  And even after all the time I have spent in the US I still call it Turkey Day—the day one eats lots of turkey and cranberries in honor of the day a bunch of pilgrims supposedly had dinner with the local native Indians.

Conspiracy theories aside, I love the concept of Thanksgiving. You gather with the people you esteem around a table full of food (namely turkey and cranberries), and you share the experience of gratitude, fulfillment, and nourishment with them.

…And then you go shopping and trample other people for the sake of cheap electronics.

How beautiful is that?

In all seriousness, a day that previously had no meaning for me because it didn’t exist in the holiday calendar has now become a reason to celebrate who I have become, another year of life, and the lessons I have picked up along the way.

So how does a Mexican girl raised in Mexico adjust to practicing gratitude on Thanksgiving 2014?

She finds reasons to be grateful.

EVERYBODY should be finding reasons to be grateful every. Single. Day.

On Success and Gratitude

Because it is so much easier to focus on the bad stuff, working out your gratitude muscle is a way to learn to re-focus your mind away from what is no longer serving you and into what is actually working for you. Remember, personal development and self-improvement is all about mindset.

If you want a surefire way to change your thoughts in order to change your world and become successful, gratitude is the best place to start.

To be honest with you, I am not exactly a pro at keeping a daily gratitude journal.  I must admit I don’t practice gratitude often enough.  But that is just it—I am too focused on how I don’t practice gratitude enough instead of appreciating when I do practice gratitude.

Think of gratitude as a way to re-focus in the present moment. Instead of always wanting more, more, more, MORE, or focusing on “never having or doing enough,” gratitude allows us to look at all that we have already accomplished or have, and appreciate and cherish it.

Gratitude creates space for mindfulness and satisfaction.

Conclusion

It’s been nearly 15 years since I’ve moved to the US.  My formative years as a young adult have now been spent watching my mother watch Novelas in Univision, people go crazy over the Super Bowl, and you can now find me playing beer pong or flip cup at parties (no more piñatas for me).

In the end, all I can say is that I am infinitely grateful for every single minute of my formative years as a child spent in Mexico, and even more so for every single minute of my formative years as a young adult in the U.S.

What are YOU grateful for?

Tweet this and tell me what you are grateful for: Today I am #grateful for….

 

If you liked what you read, then subscribe to my newsletter below to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset straight to your inbox!

AND, if you too want to help transform this world one person at a time, please share this article so that others can benefit from its message and so they too can improve their life.

Thank you for reading and Happy Thanksgiving 2014 to you!

Living your Unlived Life: How to Have No Regrets in Life

Carpe Diem, seize the day, no regrets… we all want success, a life of passion, the life of our wildest dreams, and a life that is meaningful. But somewhere along the way we settled for plan B… or could it be that the life of our dreams became plan B for the sake of the sense of security that comes with a bi-weekly paycheck?

We could all blame life. Life gets in the way. You go to college, get a job, buy a car, you gotta pay the bills, and next thing you know it’s been two years and you didn’t accomplish any of the dreams you had in mind.

The novel you always wanted to write is no more than a mere 400 bytes of information in your computer’s hard drive and the vision you had for a life of adventure is now relegated to living vicariously through the life of others—don’t we all love people who break the internet with their butts and reality TV anyways?

What the hell happened to us?

Well, according to super genius teens Willow and Jaden Smith, we have forgotten what we once knew as babies—to breathe. But that’s a can of worms that need not be opened right now. Suffice it to say that these two are onto something and could perhaps show the rest of us what having no regrets looks like.

Speaking of no regrets, what does “the unlived life” even mean?

The unlived life is that life you always wished you had, the relationship you always wish you had, the person you always wish you were—but that alas, due to unforeseen circumstances, you do not have the life you wish you had, you are not in the relationship that you always dreamed of, and you are nowhere near becoming the person you wish you were. Hence the term “unlived.”

The unlived life is a jerk. It beckons you with promises of greener grasses but never quite delivers.

But I am not here to beat on you for not having this so-called-life-of-your-dreams. I am here to throw my arms around you and to tell you that it is ok that you have an unlived life—most people do.

I know I do. I am a work in progress after all.

#itstartstoday

I don’t know how, why, or when it happened—in fact, it has been more or less of a journey, but one day I just woke up and decided to get my shit together. I was going to have that life: carpe diem, seize the day, no regrets.

Armed with the knowledge I had on self-improvement, neuropsychology, and Jungian psychology, I set out on an inner journey into the depths of my very existence as a human being.

That fateful day when I set off into creating the life of my dreams has been today for as long as I can remember. That means that every single day I wake up with the purpose in mind of creating this life of my dreams, forging the relationships I want to be in, and being that person I wish to be.

Every. Single. Day.

It isn’t always peachy (in fact, I have come to accept and cherish this about life), but I make it a point to show up to life regardless. In fact, it is always the nasty stuff in our lives that points us in the direction that we have to go on.

And since we’re on the subject of no regrets…

I recently uncovered a regret I had about my life. I realized that enrolling in graduate school to put off paying the student loans I acquired through my years as an undergraduate student wasn’t the best idea. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVED grad school, and my regret isn’t that the interest on the loans was accruing, but rather my regret was that I realized I was running and hiding from the responsibilities of “growing up.”

This regret weighed on my shoulder for quite some time. Ironically, my studies in graduate school helped me mature in such a way that I can now look forward and say “ok, I am facing this problem I have instead of running from it.”  In case you are wondering, yes, the loans are all taken care of as you read this.

Another example is a relationship that I was in many years ago. I was so crazy in love with this person that I let fear consume my mind because I didn’t want my heart to be broken. I was so self-centered that I didn’t even notice that in running from my feelings I was the one who broke my own heart.

In the end, I’ve realized that if I want to have a life of no regrets, then I must take a good look at the life that I wish to have and to run towards it instead of away from it. After all, my philosophy is and has always been: What’s done is done, and what remains is what is ahead.

Seriously, no regrets.

In the end, it all comes down to this one simple formula:

If you want to have no regrets in life then you better get your priorities straight

One of the most important lessons I have assimilated into my life is that of getting my priorities straight. I realized that if I have an excuse for not making something happen, then it must not be a priority in my life. It really is as simple as that.

It’s all in the mindset, and before “never writing a novel” becomes a regret, I decided to do something about it…

Scenario #1

If in the moment I am watching TV, then my priority and intention must be to watch TV—and that is certainly true if my favorite TV shows are on. But it is also true that if I am watching TV because I don’t feel like writing, then my priority is not to write that novel I have always wanted to write.

Scenario #2

If in the moment I am sitting at my computer writing, then my priority must be to work on that novel I have been dreaming of for ages.

You see the difference?

I promise you this, when you get your priorities straight everything falls into place (Tweet this!).

“To hell with circumstances I create opportunities” Bruce Lee (heck, tweet this too!).

This is why I created a program to help you become productive and overcome procrastination to get on and actually create the vision of the life you had in mind for yourself. If you want to be the first to find out about this little project of mine, sign up to my newsletter at the top of the page or right below this article.

Conclusion

The point here is, if there is anything that you take away from this week’s article it is to start today to live your life unlived. Don’t procrastinate, don’t make excuses, and more importantly, no regrets. And no regrets means starting today.

The life that is outside your fears, outside your pain, and outside your accomplishments, is your life unlived. And it has been patiently waiting for you to take notice of it. It may be scary to take a leap into the unknown, but hopefully I have been able to inspire you to realize that the fear of this life is not worth the tradeoff.

So, with all that being said, what is it going to look like to have no regrets and to live your unlived life every single ducking day for the rest of your life? And, what are you doing today to actively create the life of your dreams?

 

If you liked what you read, then subscribe to my newsletter below to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset straight to your inbox!

AND, if you too want to help transform this world one person at a time, please share this article so that others can benefit from its message and so they too can improve their life.

Thank you for reading and bestestest of wishes to you!

An Unconventional Formula for Success You Need to Apply TODAY

Everyone wants to have a quick fix for success, but not everyone understands that the formula for success is a wee-bit more complicated than that. Many will argue that the formula for success will result on achieving one’s desired goals, when in reality the formula for success is about more than achievements.

The formula for success is about how you learn (tweet this!).

Not too long ago I wrote an article about the entrepreneurial mindset to allude to the fact that everyone has entrepreneurial skills as part of their skill arsenal. Then, after writing about how to become successful last week, I thought it wise to continue exploring the topics of success and entrepreneurship.

To recap that article about the entrepreneurial mindset in one simple quote:

“Being entrepreneurial is essentially about thinking and doing something that we have not done before in order to achieve a desirable goal or outcome” Donna de Carolis, PhD.

I love this quote because it demystifies entrepreneurship and makes it an achievable goal. In other words, to be an entrepreneur you do not have to own or operate your own business. It just so happens to be that entrepreneurs more often than not choose to become their own bosses.

So what does this have to do with success and this so-called formula for success?

Self-awareness + action = success (Tweet this!)

Allow me to elaborate.

The role of self-awareness in this so-called formula for success:

Ultimately, the formula for success is as simple as developing self-awareness. For the sake of simplicity, we shall think of self-awareness as the thoughts you have about your thoughts, behaviors, and emotional states.

As I wrote last week, becoming successful largely depends upon your ability to do three things: honoring where you are at, keeping your eye on the big picture, and defining success in your own terms. But in order to fulfill any of the above requirements, you have to know yourself, and you need some sort of awareness of your thoughts, behaviors, and emotional states.

One of my old bosses used to say “to think outside the box you first have to know the limits of the box”.

Self-awareness, as the sole foundation for the formula for success, is the difference between going off on a tangent of doom inside your head, and knowing when to stop this inner-conversation because you know that this pattern is not self-serving of whatever goal you have in mind.

I am going to be writing a lot about self-serving thoughts, behaviors, and emotions as I am on a “what is going to help me accomplish my goals today?” kick. And in order to figure out what is and what isn’t going to help me accomplish my goals today I need a certain degree of self-awareness.

For example, I joined the NaNoWriMo movement because I have always wanted to publish a book, and because I wanted to beta-test a program I am developing to overcome procrastination and increase productivity (sign up for my newsletter at the top of the page or below this article if you want to be the first to find out more about this program or even becoming a beta-tester yourself). As I was developing a plan to achieve my goal of finishing a book I decided I could easily write 500 words daily over the next 90 days.

If I want to accomplish my goal of finishing my book by the end of January I have to get really honest with myself.

Is watching TV going to serve my purpose of writing 500 words today?

Is my low self-esteem going to serve my purpose of writing 500 words today?

Is not being in the mood to write today going to serve my purpose of writing 500 words today?

By now you have probably guessed that the answer to these questions was a big, fat HELL DUCKING* NO (in case you are not familiar, iPhones autocorrect the F-word+ING with the word “ducking”).

But in order to know if any of these issues are self-serving to my goal or not, I first have to become aware of how I am using my time, what I am afraid of, why I have low self-esteem, or why I am not in the mood to write.

So far I’ve written 4800 words out of 5500 that I should have written by November 11th. I consider this a success—but that’s another conversation that shall be continued in weeks to come.

The role of taking action in this so-called formula for success:

Now that you understand the value of self-awareness to success, you will want to take action on what you learned about yourself. You can think of it as a feedback loop in which your awareness of yourself provides you with the information that you need to implement in order to make the desired changes that can help you achieve your goal.

See what I did there? I added italics to the word implement to draw your attention to the fact that you have to take action. No excuses, no questions asked. You just do it.

The one thing that you can do right now that is going to contribute towards the success you wish to achieve is starting today.

Today, not tomorrow, today.

I found this little gem on the internet about a small movement dedicated to improving your life today instead of waiting for tomorrow. In fact, this is the reason why I no longer make New Year’s resolutions.  If you remember last week’s post, only about 8% of Americans who make New Year’s resolutions successfully follow through and achieve what they set out to do.

So what is going on here?

What is the #itstartstoday movement all about?

The #itstartstoday movement is a call to action to take whatever step you need to take today in order to live the life of your dreams. It is a call to live an authentic life full of meaning. It is a call to engage with your life more fully in this very moment, rather than waiting until January 1st to get started.

If there is a gap between how your life is right now and how you wish your life was, know that the gap can be bridged by taking action. Success can be defined as the completion and accomplishment of that desired life. But in order to get there you have to take consistent and continuous action.

Self-awareness can only take you so far in becoming successful. That is why action is such an integral part of the formula for success.

If you have built castles in the sky, build a bridge that gets you there – tweet this.

Conclusion

The formula for success is composed of two important elements: becoming aware of your thoughts, behaviors, and emotional states, and taking action upon what you have learned about yourself.

Self-awareness allows you to tap into the very entrepreneurial mindset that allows you to do something that you have not done before in order to achieve different results (surely you have heard about Einstein’s definition of insanity). But if you want to become successful you have to take action on what you have learned through self-reflection today.

Self-awareness says: “I know that I do not feel confident in my ability to reach my goal.” And taking action looks like developing the skills that I have identified will aid me in reaching my goal.

Always keep in mind that success is a journey. I cannot emphasize enough to read last week’s article on re-framing the meaning of success.

So… what will you do today to build that bridge to the castle you have built in the sky?

 

If you liked what you read, then subscribe to my newsletter below to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset straight to your inbox!

AND, if you too want to help transform this world one person at a time, please share this article so that others can benefit from its message and so they too can improve their life.

Thank you for reading and bestestest of wishes to you!

How to Become Successful at the Blink of an Eye

How to Become Successful at the Blink of an Eye is the first article of a series of articles on procrastination, productivity, success, and setting goals that work for you instead of against you. If you like what you read and want to receive future articles on the topic, sign up to my newsletter at the top of the page or right below this article. Thank you and enjoy.

Did you know that 45% of Americans usually make a New Year’s resolution and only 8% of Americans become successful at achieving their New Year’s resolutions?

Failure.  Let’s face it.   We all hate the pesky little word.  I mean, who wants to be that person who “couldn’t make it happen?”, or that person who “no matter how hard they try, their efforts amount to a big pile o’nothing”?

I do.  I am that person who wants to be that person who fails at everything they do.  But before you write me off as crazy, hear me out…

Becoming successful is determined by your ability to fail as many times as necessary.  In fact, I even dare say that success is a direct result of failure.

Success is a direct result of failure (tweet this!).

What I have found is that forsaking failure is actually contributing to the problems we experience around success.  For example, we tend to get bogged down by the details along the journey towards success because it may feel like we’re not reaching any milestones.  And in judging ourselves for not achieving said milestones we actually re-inforce the negative feelings we typically associate with failure that keep us from making progress.

This is something I realized yesterday when someone on Facebook asked the question: “Where were you last year compared to this year?”  It was in answering this question to myself that the last two years of my life fell into perspective right before my eyes.  While I had been chasing the idea that I had to become successful at a certain goal I had, I had missed out on all of the self-growth and progress I have made since I began this relentless pursuit of success.  I felt like a dog chasing its tail!

It was then that, in my desperate pursuit of the ideal of success and with my shoulders weighing heavy from the burden of not achieving said success, I finally saw the light at the end of the tunnel and realized what it takes to become successful.   This in turn made me realize why people are 82% more prone to fail and only 8% prone to succeed at their New Year’s resolutions:

Turns out we have the definition of success and failure all wrong.  In a sense, achieving success is going to take more than willpower; it is going to require that you simply close your eyes for a minute or two and honor where you are at, keep your eye on the big picture, and define success in your own terms.

Become Successful at the Blink of an Eye Tip #1:  Honor where you are at.

One of my old college friends felt like a total failure because at age thirty she was not living up to the standard idea of success.  She measured her ideals of success against not only impossible standards she couldn’t possibly live up to, but also against what other people were accomplishing.  Thus, she continually put herself down for failing to achieve success.

So close your eyes and question everything you think you may know about success and failure.  If you think success means you should own a car, question where that answer comes from; if you think you are dumb because you don’t own a car, question where that reaction comes from, you get the point.  You could go on questioning these ideals of success all day long, but at one point or another hopefully you will realize that you have been sold a lie when you were told that you had to achieve x, y, or z to become successful.

In the end, even those royal fuck ups are a step you can take on your way to become successful.  Why?  Because you are continuously changing and improving.  The person you are tomorrow will look back to yesterday and realize just how much you have changed.

Open your eyes now and choose not to do yourself wrong just because other people’s markers of success are different than yours.  Honor where you are at and look back at how your life has changed and improved in the last year or two–even when the shit has hit the fan or you feel the need to improve your life.

Become Successful at the Blink of an Eye Tip #2:  Keep your eye on the big picture.

I get it.  You can only tolerate failure so much without seeing the desired results that let you know that success is just around the corner.  I’ve been there.  Many psychic readings later and I am still hearing that I am on the right path (remember?  honor where you are at!).  But I constantly asked myself how I could be on the right path and not feel like I’ve become successful.  That is until I asked myself “where was I last year compared to this year?”

When I look back at where I was last year I cannot help but know that I have achieved some measure of success.  But that comes with me choosing to see my progress as success instead of as failure–this is where a glass half full attitude comes in handy as you can see.

Keep in mind that our culture and media are pros at conditioning us for immediate gratification and 8-second attention spans.  We are used to fast-food, TV on demand, microwaves, credit cards, and squirrel moments (or what I like to call shiny-object syndrome)–thus making it harder to keep your eye on the big picture.

Close your eyes and make it a point to visualize every step that has led you to where you are now, and see every one of these steps as a success story of its own.  Then open your eyes again and realize that every time that you failed and you fell, you always got back up again–and that, my friend, is true success.

Become Successful at the Blink of an Eye Tip #3:  Define success in your own terms.

Rule #1 of Success Club, don’t compare yourself to others!

Rule #2 of Success Club, celebrate the small victories.

Rule #3 of Success Club, don’t compare yourself to others!

So you want to become successful? Know what that means.  Have a plan.  Define this plan based on your own journey.  Avoid the comparissionitis trap and keep an eye on out for the progress you are making.

Choose to think that “I have not failed 10,000 times. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

Become your own scientist and be curious about the journey of success, as opposed to the journey to success.

 

Conclusion.

If you want to become successful, all you have to do is close your eyes for a minute or two and re-frame the meanings of success and failure.  Remember to see success as a journey, and choose to experience failure as indispensable to success.  In the end what is left is your understanding that success is a mindset, and it can be experienced at every single step along the way, even when you fail.

10 Things you can do NOW to Improve your Life

To improve your life… isn’t that what we all strive for?

A couple of weekends ago the damnedest thing (or should I say “the best thing that could have happened”) happened to me.  Short of two pages into Danielle LaPorte’s Desire Map, the very first words of the book stopped me dead on my tracks and made me question the life that I live.  If you want to improve your life, it goes without saying that questioning everything is a must!

Danielle’s message wasn’t anything I had not heard before.  She just so happened to have an uncanny way to drive the message home for me.  And so I sat around for an entire weekend depressed out of my mind.  I watched all of the Naruto episodes (yes, I still watch Anime at 28) that I know can make me cry, I re-scheduled one of my coaching calls, and I pretty much sat around in my PJs all day unable to get myself out of this funk.

The result of my soul-searching:  I don’t want to spend one more minute or any more of my energy “hating” or “disliking” any aspect of my life.  I realized that I’d rather spend my energy transforming my life.

It is very easy to focus on all that is wrong with our lives, but to find the real meaning behind everything, to improve your life, and to find the love that you seek you will have to shift your perception of the world.  No excuses, no questions asked.

Ok, so how do you improve your life?

So, without further ado, if you are ready to transform and improve your life, here are 10 actionable items and shifts in perception that you can execute right now:

1.  Be curious.

Everyone tells you that curiosity killed the cat, but no one ever seems to remember that Curiosity also landed on Mars on August 5th, 2012 and then went on to take the first ever selfie on Mars.  Opportunity, the other rover launched on 2003, had been roaming Mars already when Curiosity came into the picture.  Think about it, Curiosity and Opportunity.

Actionable tip:  improving your life is going to take work and self-awareness.  If you want opportunities, then you are going to have to activate your ability to be curious.  Next time you find yourself going on a tangent of doom (i.e., “I don’t feel good enough so I am just not going to do anything, I am a failure after all”), stop yourself and be curious about your thoughts.

Ask yourself “why am I having these thoughts?” and pay attention to the answers.

The point is… If you want to see more opportunities you are going to have to be more curious.

2.  Find the Silver Lining.

Let’s be real here:  Life can be sucky.  Your first true love breaking up with you, Ebola ravaging West Africa, and the ongoing problems in the Middle East. If you want to improve your life, then you are going to have to move on.  Simple as that.

You have to keep in mind at all times that life is not a destination or a goal, life is a journey.  And in order to keep things in perspective at all times you have to find the silver-lining to every situation–the good and the bad ones alike.

Actionable tip: Grieve, remember that this too shall pass, and focus on how this experience has helped you build your character

3.  Its not all About Having Positive Thoughts.

I used to be one of these New Agey people who swore up and down that being positive was the key to happiness… and then I got real with myself and realized that there is a wealth of knowledge hiding underneath all of the shit and ugliness in this world.

In today’s world, happiness, joy and optimism have become nothing short of a band-aid you place on the ugly… and this is simply an unrealistic mindset.

Actionable tip:  When shit hits the fan, it is ok to feel lame.  Again, grieve, throw yourself a pitty party (when you allow yourself to feel the way you feel, the feelings typically lift), and just sit with the ugly until you are ready to get back up and re-align with your positive mindset again.

In other words:  don’t force yourself to be eternally optimistic if it doesn’t feel right–you’re a human, not a saint.

4.  Honor where you are at. 

That means that when things are shitty and you are feeling sorry about yourself, you honor that.  You don’t judge yourself based on how you or someone else thinks you should feel.  Should is a dangerous word that is based on external rules and ideals.

If you are struggling in a relationship with yourself or your significant other, know that you are exactly where you are meant to be; if you are broke like a joke, know that you are exactly where you are meant to be; if you are experiencing self-doubt around your abilities to reach your goals, know that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

Actionable tip: Be mindful of where you are at and then realize that in this very moment you have the choice to engage in self-talk that is either self-serving or self-destructive.  Which one will you engage?

Depending on your choice, you may just realize that when you are present and honor where you are at and who you are in this very moment, you have the opportunity to start over and change your reality.

5.  Question EVERYTHING.

This is one of my absolute favorite things to do. I am a huge conspiracy theorist… but I am not talking about government conspiracies or historical conspiracies (although those can be interesting too), I am talking about the conspiracy which holds that the universe has to deliver nothing less than what you are ready to receive.

If your mind is open to receive new opportunities, then you shall receive; but if your mind is caught up in old beliefs about the world, then you will most likely continue experiencing the same story over and over again.

Question everything from your thoughts, beliefs, and reactions, and you may just realize that there is a place beyond thought and beyond belief where possibility resides.

Actionable tip: Next time you get mad at the person who cut you off in traffic, stop and ask yourself why you chose to react that way.  OR, next time you judge someone else because of the way they dress, ask yourself why you are judging others.

6.  Love Yourself.

I am a huge believer of the power of self-esteem and self-worth. If I could tell you about the one thing you can do to improve your life right now it is simply to love yourself more.

I am sure you’ve heard that quote “treat yourself the way you would treat someone you love”–to love yourself is exactly that.

Self-love is super important because when you love yourself you do not question your worth against the things that you have to do. You do not say things like “Who am I to think that I can make a difference in the world?” you simply know your value and you follow through.

Actionable tip: be kind to yourself, keep track of your mental chatter and notice when you are being judgmental of yourself or others; choose to put yourself first when appropriate.

7.  Make it Happen.

If you want to improve your life then you better make it happen.  It’s ok to sulk and have a pitty party for a minute or two, but you will eventually have to get back up and face life head on again. If you are unhappy with a certain aspect of your life, then you change it, no excuses, no questions asked.

Action tip: bring back some of that good ‘old curiosity to the table and stop the mental chatter about how sucky your life is right now and how the world is conspiring against you and blah blah blah.  Then ask yourself what you can do today to improve your situation and listen for an answer. Trust me, the universe always delivers.

8.  Re-Align Yourself.

The ego (or the mental chatter going on in your head at all times during the day) is a funny little guy because it likes to think that it is the only reality out there. Truth be told, the ego is only a small piece of your psychological and spiritual world.

To be identified as the things you own, the person you’ve become, and the achievements you’ve accomplished is only half the story.  There is a greater reality that can only be accessed when you re-align yourself with that part of you that is closest to god, the universe, Shiva,… whatever you want to call it.  The secret to transforming and improving your life is to tap into this reality.

Actionable tip: re-connect with your spirituality from time to time. Depending on what denomination you subscribe to, reconnecting with your spirituality can be as simple as going to church, taking a walk in nature or simply sitting in silence.

9.  See the Big Picture.

Sometimes when we are caught up in how sucky life can be you forget to look at the big picture of your life.  Seeing the big picture is similar to finding the silver lining but with a bang.  It means that you make peace with the present for the sake of what you see in your future.

When we are focused on the big picture you can easily see how the job you hate can actually be easily re-framed into the skill that you needed to land your dream job in the future, or how the relationship that didn’t work out can actually be easily re-framed into the opportunity to love yourself more and put yourself first in relationships.

There is no such thing as failure, only feedback.

Actionable tip: remember that this too shall pass. You can also ask yourself “how can what I just experienced contribute to my spiritual and psychological growth?”

10.  Life your Life from the Inside Out.

Without a shadow of a doubt I can tell you that to improve your life you are going to have to re-align with your greatest Self and live your life based on your inner-most values and principles.  Danielle LaPorte calls it the Desire Map, and Neuropsychology calls it target states.

Whatever the name, living your life from the inside out means that you look beyond the external object of desire and find the intrinsic reward that this external object is triggering.  For example, emotional eaters eat because it soothes their emotional states, and shopaholics spend all of their money shopping because it fulfills a particular emotional need.

The reason we seek external rewards is because we have been conditioned to look for approval, love, and wealth outside of ourselves by our culture and the media.  In reality, the emotional states that any of these triggers activate within us are already within us and can accessed at any time.

Actionable tip: next time you have a specific desire in mind, ask yourself what it is you are trying to feel in response to this desire.

Do you want to travel to the beach because you want to relax? If so, do you really need to visit the beach right now to feel relaxed or can you evoke feelings of relaxation in this precise moment? I am not saying “don’t go to the beach to relax,” what I am saying is “don’t wait for the beach to deliver relaxation next month when you can be relaxed right now.”

 

In conclusion…

Transforming and improving your life is going to depend on your commitment to follow through with these 10 simple shifts in perception.  It all comes down to self-awareness and the desire to transform yourself from the inside out.

The important thing is to be kind to yourself, love yourself more, and keep your eye on the goal.

 

If you liked what you read subscribe to my newsletter below to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset straight to your inbox!

AND, if you too want to help transform this world one person at a time, please share this article so that others can benefit from its message and so they too can improve their life.

Thank you for reading and bestestest of wishes to you!

Achieving your Dreams: The Fool-Proof Formula

One of the things I love about Tim Ferriss’ book, the 4-hour workweek is that he argues against the case of a deferred life. What is a deferred life, you may ask? The deferred life is that one that you put on hold “for the time being” as you wait for the planets and the stars to align so that you can start living the life of your dreams.  Achieving your dreams means putting this “deferred life” back in your priority list.

Thoughts like…

“I don’t feel ready to take action because x, y, or z.”

“I don’t have time to take action.”

“I’ll just wait until I retire.”

“I don’t have what it takes.”

“Only a very few get to make their dreams come true.”

“I am a failure, why try?”

Guess what, YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT… and I can relate.

Just yesterday I was experiencing a fleeting moment of self-doubt. One of those windows of darkness that once you go through it you may never come out. My mind was in whiny mode wondering if I could make my ideal life a reality. That is until I read this fabulous quote:

The only real limitation on your abilities is the level of your desires. If you want it badly enough, there are no limits on what you can achieve (Tweetworthy!).

I have read and heard a lot about Danielle LaPorte’s Desire Map but had not taken the opportunity to see what it’s all about… needless to say the book will become part of my collection as I am most certainly triggered by the idea of “desires”.

Achieving your dreams just got a hell of a lot easier

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, and I will continue saying it over and over again:

The path to follow your dreams depends on your commitment to focus only on that which supports your goal (Tweetworthy!).

The formula to achieving all of your dreams is simple. What is not so simple is actually stepping outside of your comfort zone and into greatness. As I wrote last week, fear will hold you back only if you allow it to do so, as its main job is to let you know where your greatest areas for opportunity are.

The formula:

Identify your dream + focus on how you can make it happen + honor the obstacles in the way = success in your own terms.

Remember, achieving your dreams is a journey, not a destination!

You see, I know I am not the only one who wants to change the world for the better. You can change the world too! Share this article by tweeting, liking, or emailing it with those who need to read about it most. Together, you and I, can reach our fullest potential and change this world, one person at a time.

AND, if you liked what you read subscribe to my newsletter below to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset straight to your inbox!

Thank you for reading and bestestest of wishes to you!

Facing your Fear and a Podcast Interview

I think what I love most about the mind and its power is that you always have a choice. Should you chose to take responsibility for your thoughts, the meaning you give to your world, and the direction your life is going on, your life could turn around completely.

If you are experiencing fear around anything in your life:

  • being judged by others,
  • not feeling good enough to put yourself out there,
  • fearing that despite your best efforts you won’t be able to succeed at what ever you set out to do.

I GET IT.

Yes, fear sucks.  It’s paralyzing, it’s yucky, and it’s near impossible to ignore.  And don’t you dare ignore it because it will find a way to creep up on you again.  But you have the choice of how you deal with fear.

I’ve come to think about fear in a completely new way.

What if fear was simply a signpost meant to remind you that you are on the right path?

(tweet this)
Think about it.  The experience of fear typically arises precisely when you are trying to push beyond the boundaries of your self-imposed limitations.

For example, when you fear that despite your best efforts you won’t be able to succeed at what ever you set out to do, what you are really saying to yourself is that:

1. You acknowledge that success is a possibility, but…

2. You choose to focus on failure as a greater possibility.

3. WHAT? WHY?

So, next time fear creeps up on you, make an effort to remember that what you are facing are simply the inner-demons guarding a treasure so grand that your mind cannot begin to comprehend it now.

Facing my own inner-demons

I had to face my own inner-demons not too long ago.  You see, I am not particularly fond of the sound of my voice, and although I love public speaking, I am camera- or voice recorder-shy.  But I wasn’t going to let that stop me from putting my message out there so that I could reach and help more people.

I had the beautiful opportunity of recording my very first podcast interview with Angela Wilkinson over at The Goddess Next Door.  She was so awesome at just getting me to calm down and relax a little bit (I was seriously both super nervous and excited) and the conversation ended up going so well I couldn’t have planned it better.

I faced my inner-demons and the best part is that after facing my fear head on absolutely nothing happened.  No one judged me, and if anyone did it’s ok because I still love and accept myself fully.  No one has told me my voice is weird, and if anyone did it’s ok.  The only thing that did happen is that I got to record a wonderful interview full of useful tips to help you achieve your goals.

So, without further ado, if you are experiencing resistance and procrastinating about your goals in life and business, listen to the podcast as I share great tips on how to push forward even when you are facing your biggest fears.

You can find the iTunes link here, and the podcast’s page here.

Here’s to many more podcast interviews in the future, facing fear, and to you achieving your goals!

Now, in the comments below, share with everyone what you are doing today to overcome the fear that is holding you back from achieving your goals?
You see, I know I am not the only one who wants to change the world for the better. You can change the world too! Share this article by tweeting, liking, or emailing it with those who need to read about it most. Together, you and I, can reach our fullest potential and change this world, one person at a time.

AND, if you liked what you read subscribe to my newsletter below to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset straight to your inbox!

Thank you for reading and bestestest of wishes to you!

Entrepreneurial Mindset: Putting your Soul back in business

September was personal development month. For me, it marked the beginning of an interesting shift in my work as a Transformational and Mindset coach as well as in my purpose and mission statement in life. As luck would have it I had the chance to work with a group of fabulous female entrepreneurs at various stages in their businesses.

The Purpose-Driven Lifestyle and the entrepreneurial mindset

Finding your purpose in life and having a career that follows your passion is all the rage in this day and age. Because of this “fad”, everyone is searching desperately for their own piece of Passionate Lifestyle Real Estate but only a few dare to take the first steps towards said lifestyle.

In this world of Ebola outbreaks, warring states, and school shootings, your entrepreneurial spirit may just be the light at the end of the tunnel.

I’ve been reading a lot on the kinds of qualities that entrepreneurs happen to have. Amongst these qualities there seems to be an agreement that as an entrepreneur you have to be crazy optimistic to venture out of your comfort zone to go into business when everyone and their cousin’s dog constantly reminds you that the odds are NOT in your favor.

Amongst the articles I read, I found an article in Forbes.com that argues that being an entrepreneur is more about mindset than it is about business. Turns out, entrepreneurial skills and qualities are what make our everyday life innovative. It is only when we let the mind and all of its past conditioning get in the way of following our passion that becoming an entrepreneur is not possible.

The entrepreneurial mindset is the difference between staying inside one’s comfort zone and continuing a life devoid of happiness and excitement, or facing our deepest fears of failure, rejection, and even our poor self-esteem with the goal of success in mind. I even dare say that the entrepreneurial mindset is about reconnecting with your soul.

Tweet this: The entrepreneurial mindset is about reconnecting with your #Soul

Does the word soul sound to “woo-woo” for the business world where profit comes first and business operations are better left to logic? Perhaps. Perhaps not.

Truth is that if your business is built around “following your passion” whether that means spending more time with your family, doing what you love, or living the lifestyle you desire, the soul is Queen and rules in the realm of passion. Unfortunately, the mind and ego can hindered you from becoming all that you can be.

While your mind can be your best friend in business, it can also be your own worst enemy (In the past I have written about how making friends with your negative thinking patterns can be the best solution to turn negative thoughts into positive affirmations).

When your mind is aligned with your soul, the possibilities are endless…

“Who do you think you are to think that anyone would care to listen to what you have to say in this blog post” can suddenly become “I have a unique voice to share with the world.”

“I don’t deserve to be paid for the work I do in my business because I am not an expert in my industry” can become “my skills are of value to others who are willing to pay me to use them to help them solve their problems.”

“I am a failure because I didn’t get anything done today” can become “even though I didn’t get anything done today I love and accept myself fully, and I now make the conscious decision to sit down and complete a task or two.”

You get the point. Of course, it isn’t always easy to think this way, but it is your responsibility as a human being and entrepreneur to reinforce the thoughts and beliefs that are self-serving if you ever want to reach your goals.

So… tell me, what are you doing today to overcome the negative thinking patterns holding you back from achieving your goals?

 

You see, I know I am not the only one who wants to change the world for the better. You can change the world too! Share this article by tweeting, liking, or emailing it with those who need to read about it most. Together, you and I, can reach our fullest potential and change this world, one person at a time.

If you liked what you read subscribe to my newsletter to receive yummy tips on developing a rockstar mindset in your inbox!

Thank you for reading and bestestest of wishes to you!

How to Namaste all day long (and what Namaste really is all about)

Namaste is an ancient greeting that is very popular amongst those of us who have discovered the joy of Eastern religion. In our Western societies and religions, I believe that Namaste is known by Christians as the question:  What would Jesus do?  I wanted to explore these ideals this week because they speak of a state of being beyond our usual ego-centric concerns.

Unfortunately, sometimes greeting someone with reverence and asking oneself what Jesus would do is easier said than put into practice. Because I wanted to implement more of this ancient wisdom into my life I wondered whether I struggled to put these principles into practice because I didn’t fully understand what they are really about.

This is what I found…

Namaste is about transcending the stories we tell about our world.

This world we live in is made up of stories. Some are fascinating tales of adventure while others are the uneventful tales of our daily lives. Ultimately, these stories we tell ourselves are what make us who we are.

In the past I have written about how the stories we tell ourselves actually limit our understanding of the world around us and ultimately dictate what we attract into our lives. This is because what you tell yourself are your beliefs about this world are the result of all of your past experiences, cultural conditioning, and what your immediate environment (primary caregivers) has told you is true about the world you live in.

Some of us have been lucky enough to be conditioned to tell ourselves that we are valuable and beautiful beings who deserve infinite wealth, health, and love; while some of us have not been that lucky and have learned to think the opposite is true. Even better, some of us have realized that all of our past conditioning (whether good or bad) falls short of the vision we have of our lives.

(If you haven’t made the transition yet, what are you waiting for?)

Yet, despite how different all of the stories we tell ourselves about the world are—I am beautiful, I am ugly, I am a Republican, I am a Democrat—they all have one thing in common. Want to know what it is?

Take a deep breath. Notice how the air flows deep into your belly as your lungs expand beyond their usual capacity. Exhale. Repeat.  If you take a moment you may just notice that you are a being that has thoughts; you are not your thoughts.

Your mind is a beautiful expression of the divine. It can either be your best friend (when you program it to have thoughts that are positive and self-serving), or it can be your worst enemy (when you program it to have thoughts that are self-defeating). But the one thing that we all have in common is that we exist. Simple as that.

If you have ever heard of the quotes “I think therefore I am,” or “you are the universe experiencing itself subjectively,” that is exactly what they speak of. This means that your story is but a fragment (a very important one of course) of God’s imagination. What a beautiful idea, isn’t it?

Tweet this:  I am the #universe experiencing itself subjectively

The problem we run into as humans is when we believe that “my story is better than your story“. We seem to have bought into the idea that “it is my way or the highway,” and this mentality has done nothing but cause wars and destroy our one and only planet. We seem to have forgotten that we exist as One despite our differences.

What is Namaste?

Namaste is the acknowledgement of the expression of the divine that is manifest in each of us. Namaste means that you are willing to make the choice to look beyond and transcend the story you tell yourself about who you are and who the people in your life are. It means that you chose to focus on what you know to be the best possible image of yourself and that of the person in front of you.

Namaste is a beautiful and awe inspiring concept when put into practice. But, as Marie Forleo often says, “insight means nothing without action.”

When Namaste is easier said than done.

It is easy to love the word itself and focus on judging others as we are accustomed to do. Trust me; I do it quite often when I drive. That is why time and time again I swear by the idea that driving in Houston traffic is a spiritual test from the universe to measure my commitment to my ideals. You know… do I walk the talk?

So if you find yourself struggling to “walk the talk” when it comes to putting the concept of Namaste or WWJD into practice, here are three simple steps I take when I want to stay on track.

1. Take a deep breath.

Lately I’ve been on this “deep breath” kick because I have found that it helps me come back into the present moment every time I notice that my mind has gone on a tangent. Taking deep breaths brings you back to the present moment where everything and anything is possible, beyond the limited confines of your mind. It is in the present moment where you can now make the choice to disengage from your mind and story.

2. Connect with your inner-divinity.

It is much easier to honor another’s divinity when you are in touch with your own. That is why I like to shift my awareness into my heart chakra and focus on my connection with God or the universe. Of course if you do not subscribe to Eastern thought, you may want to simply ask yourself what Jesus would do in this situation.

Same concept, different story.

See? That is exactly how Namaste works.

3. Namaste all day long.

After you’ve put your story aside for a bit, all that is left is your own commitment to honor the divinity of others. Honestly, at this point it just feels perfectly effortless to see others as divine beings with human stories and human flaws—because you too are a divine human with human flaws.

When you honor another’s divinity “long enough” you may just realize what Namaste is really all about:

My soul honors your soul. I honor the place in you where the entire universe resides. I honor the light, love, truth, beauty and peace within you, because it is also within me. In sharing these things we are united, we are the same, we are one.

Tweet this:  #Namaste, the divine in me honors the divine in you

Namaste

What about you?  How have you put Namaste into practice in your daily life?  Leave a comment with your answer below!

If you liked what you read, subscribe to my newsletter below for future tips and updates on changing your life from the inside out.  As always, thank you for reading and sharing this article and helping me spread my message so that together we can reach our fullest potential and change this world, one person at a time.

3 shifts in perspective for better relationships

Better relationships.  We see them, we want them, we lack them.

Relationships are the currency of our world and we all want better relationships—whether you live in a capitalist, socialist, or communist society, relationships amongst human beings are what makes the world go round. Even if you are a loner like I am, having healthy, happy, and meaningful relationships is simply a fact of life. It is human nature, after all, to seek to fit in; and it is relationships in our early years of life that shape part of who we are to become.

Why then, do we struggle so much to find the desired meaning and satisfaction that we believe relationships ought to provide us with?

How can I have better relationships?

Have you ever asked yourself…

– Why do I have such few friends?

– Why haven’t I met my soul mate?

– And, if I’ve already met my soul mate, why is our relationship falling apart?

The truth is that there is no straightforward answer to these questions.

The good news?  To answer these questions for yourself there is something you can do! If you are experiencing difficulties around relationships, then a shift in perspective may be overdue if you want to see some change and improvement for better relationships.

Here are three fundamental shifts in perspective you have to go through in order to create healthier, happier, more meaningful, and ultimately better relationships:

1. Better relationships require that you have to love yourself first.

When you do not love yourself first, you cannot bring your best qualities to the relationship you are seeking. Loving yourself means that you are able to love and accept yourself fully. It means that you don’t sweep your flaws under the carpet, but rather that you love and accept yourself unconditionally.

More importantly, it means that you value who you are and your contribution to the relationships you are in. Think of it this way, if I were to ask you to write 10 positive and 10 negative qualities about yourself, which list would you finish faster?  If you finish the former list first, congratulations, you are on your way to having better and better relationships.  If you finished the latter list first, then not to worry, now you know that it is time to change the way you think about yourself.

Own what makes you who you are and honor both your strengths and your weaknesses.  Always remember that your relationships are a mirror of who you are, so if you want better relationships, a better you is in order.

Tweet this:  If you want better relationships, a better you is in order

2. Better relationships require that you have to give the gift of meaning.

One of my favorite prayers is the Saint Francis of Assisi’s prayer. In it, Saint Francis asks God to grant that he “not so much seek to be loved as to love, for it is in giving that we receive.” I love this quote so much because it speaks about our willingness to first give that which we wish to receive.

When we love ourselves, it is much easier to give from a place of abundance because your cup is overflowing with self-love. When you are coming from a place of love and abundance so your cup is overflowing, people intuitively notice that and want to be around you.  On the other hand, when you are coming from a place of fear or anger, you attract more of that onto you and you automatically repel the healthy relationships you are seeking. In these situations I like to ask myself “how can I bring more love into this situation/relationship?”

Basically what I want to challenge you to do is to be a better friend for the sake of better relationships.  Instead of expecting others to fulfill your needs, how about bringing your best self forward without expectation?

3. Better relationships require that you focus on greatness.

A wise soul once told me: “Greatness… believe that every one you talk to is great… see what happens.”

If you have ever heard of the word “Namaste” then you already understand this idea of focusing on the “greatness” in others. If you have never heard of the word, Namaste is basically a salutation in which you are telling the other person that you honor the light within them. It is a beautiful vow to the greater Self in others.

But how often do we really see what is good in others?

More often than not we chose to focus on what we think is wrong with other people—the argument you had with them two weeks ago, that one thing they said that, in your eyes, put into question their morals.  Focusing on others’ shortcomings is actually counterproductive in creating better relationships because people want to feel good about themselves, and they will seek to hang around those who make them feel good.

What would happen if you chose to forgive others’ shortcomings and focused instead on what is good in them? I challenge you to make “Namaste” a daily practice… see what happens.

Tweet this: I bow to the light within you

Better relationships take work

I don’t know about you, but I can’t imagine a life without the most fundamental relationships in my life. I am in deep need of those around me. All I know is that I value the people in my life tremendously and I want nothing but the best for them.  For that reason I have made the commitment to myself to better myself and bring my best qualities into my relationships.

So if you want to improve and find more meaning and satisfaction in your relationships, realize that having “better relationships” starts with you. And with this realization comes the question: why not shift your perspective on the current relationships in your life?

Ask yourself, how can I have better relationships?

Do you have any other ides of how you have improved your relationships in the past? Please share your experiences in the comments below!

And here is to long-lasting, magnificent friendships!

If you liked what you read, subscribe to my newsletter below for future tips and updates on changing your life from the inside out.  As always, thank you for reading and sharing this article and helping me spread my message so that together we can reach our fullest potential and change this world, one person at a time.

Chuck Palahniuk - "Find joy in everything, it is your responsibility to love it, or change it.

Chuck Palahniuk – “Find joy in everything, it is your responsibility to love it, or change it.”

« Older posts Newer posts »

© 2017 Hello Epic Life!

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑