úterý 4. května 2010

Step Into Your Own Powerful Self

It never ceases to amaze me how people like to rely on other people for help, support or advice. Worse still – how people tend to blame others for their problems and current circumstances.

In reality, the solutions could not be easier. We just have to realize that we are our own powerhouse. All we have to do is step into it and use the power that is there in our disposal and has always been.

I watched some time ago the speech Oprah Winfrey gave when she announced that her current TV season will be her last. She was holding it together very well until a certain moment, when emotions took over and she needed to pause and compose herself before she continued. In that pause, there was everything. In that pause I saw a powerful woman, who made a decision not to cry, because she knew she would probably never stop and that would have spoiled the moment. Having said that, how many of us would crumble under the pressure? How many of us would allow factors other than our own decisions to take over? Probably many of us.

By stepping into our own powerhouse we take the power for our decisions and our behavior into our own hands and deal with life situations from that starting point. If things don’t work out, we are responsible and can try a different way. If things go brilliantly, hey, we take that responsibility and pride, too!

When facing a tough decision or a difficult situation, just remind yourself that you are the one who holds the power. If the analogy with a powerhouse helps, use it. Imagine yourself stepping into a powerhouse called your inner self, switch on all the lights and off you go. The lights will show you the way and the walls of the house will protect you. You are invincible.

čtvrtek 29. dubna 2010

Can Honesty be Your Cure?

I have a friend who recently started complaining about persistent insomnia. He also persistently believed it was caused by weather changes, heavy food, uncomfortable pillows, etc. Then I asked him, just for fun, to put down all the things that were currently not working in his life or that bothered him on some level. He did the list, brought it to me – and oh boy, was it long!

He walked around with this long list in his head, not knowing it was so long and not realizing how much certain points on the list frustrated him – until his body decided to take over and send a message that something was very, very wrong. Needless to say, just making the list has helped my friend gain more clarity. And by starting to tackle one issue after another (always starting with the smallest and easily fixable issues first) he has regained his restful nights.

The lesson here is not about lists and sleepless nights. The issue here is honesty and how much we are using it when evaluating or thinking about our lives. How many excuses do you use to hide the obvious facts? How many lies do you feed yourself on a daily basis? How often are your feelings spot-on but you decide to listen to your “brain voice” instead?

By incorporating honesty into your daily actions towards yourself, you will gain many valuable insights. Not only about who you are but about who you really want to be. If you want to be happy, positive, full of energy (and have a good night’s sleep!), start asking some relevant questions and answering them honestly. This would be a great beginning, followed by, hopefully, some even more relevant action.

úterý 27. dubna 2010

The Easy Way to Support Your Goals

If some of you don’t like the word “goals”, you can use whatever word feels right for you: desires, intentions, wishes, aspirations… The point is, if you want to get somewhere in life, you need to know your direction – and your goals are like stepping stones towards that desired final outcome.

So why is it then that so many people struggle to achieve their goals? And what can be done to avoid this situation? It might sound too “technical” but setting up a structure around the way you approach your goals is very important.

What I mean by “structure” is certain practices, rituals, habits, that make sure you are working on your goals continuously. If you go towards your goals on a daily basis, that is already a good beginning.

Other practices that might be helpful are: regular visualizations, meditations, making vision boards, posting affirmations somewhere where you can see them, listening to motivational programs while driving… Or you can do all of these!

The point is – setting your goals is not enough. You have to create a support system which will carry you through the times when you want to quit. Having a routine to rely on when things get tough differentiates those who actually achieve their goals from those who repeatedly fail to achieve them.

If you need a friend to accompany you to the gym, because weight loss is your goal, find one. If you need to re-decorate your office to make it a happier place to work in, do it. If you need to get up 15 minutes earlier to be alone and center yourself for the day, do it.

Only you know what works for you. Don’t postpone setting up these structures; they will keep you on track when it is needed the most.

středa 21. dubna 2010

Time for Yourself – Anybody Interested?

A while ago, I ran one of my workshops and something interesting happened. Before I tell you what this was, I have to point out that the participants were all female – I wonder then, if the following “syndrome” is something typical for women only. I’ll leave that to your own judgment.

At the beginning of the workshop I asked the participants to put aside their families and their needs, their jobs and the demands connected to them. I asked the ladies in the class to concentrate (for the purpose of the workshop) purely on themselves; on their wishes, desires and goals. We underwent the entire process of how to make perfect goals, step-by-step.

My surprise came when, at the end of the exercise, I asked them to read some of their goals to me! The goals were very similar to this: “I want to have…for my children.” “I need to….for my husband.” “I deliver….for my boss.” Most of their goals were tailored around helping out somebody else!!!

I was left wondering – is it really so difficult for us to put aside 3 hours of our time and be utterly and shamelessly selfish? Is it impossible not to focus most of our actions on those around us? Was the concept of prioritizing ourselves for a while really such a foreign concept to those fabulous ladies?

If you find yourself thinking along the same lines as the ladies in my workshop, I would like to ask you to go somewhere quiet and think about your life and who you are living it for. It goes without saying that doing things for others is part of who we are as human beings. However, devoting at least a tiny little bit (if not more) to ourselves and our own thoughts and desires on a daily basis is a must.

If you realize it and start doing something about it, you will be surprised. You will feel more valuable to yourself and become instantly more valued by others. Just you wait!

pondělí 5. dubna 2010

How Do You Make Your Decisions?

Making decisions is part of our daily life and for many it can be a cumbersome task. I know some people who go around asking half the world what they think about the decision they are about to make. Imagine if the opinions of such a huge group vary (and they often do!) – what then? Then there are those who do their research quietly. They read the information, compare the facts, make a shortlist of possible outcomes and then finally make their decision. By themselves, yes, but my goodness the time it took!

And then there is the rest, who make their decisions spontaneously – and believe it or not they actually have fun in the process!

What is the difference here?

When making our decisions, we can either rely on the external factors – the facts, the numbers, the news, the experience and opinions of other people – or we can listen to our own internal guidance and follow what we feel like and what works for us.

Guess what? Who knows you and your situation and needs the best? You do! Who knows (even if very, very deep inside) the right answer? You do! Who knows what feels right and what feels wrong? Yes, you do.

It is the nature of human beings to underestimate our own opinion and guidance. We tend to believe that others know more and that if we listen and follow, we will be fine.

While that might be true in some cases, if you eliminate that external stimuli, calm your mind down and listen to your inner guidance, it will give you the right answer – every time; hands down; without any mistake.

Try it with “small stuff” and when you feel you can trust that inner voice, go for the “big stuff”. You will not be disappointed.

středa 31. března 2010

A Few Words about Energy

My son is almost 10 and he recently started his “I am into hip-hop now” phase. As a result, the latest CD by the Black Eyed Peas landed in our household and we all had to listen to it and express our opinion.

Trying to be a “go with the flow” mother (at least in certain areas), I happily listened to the music and the lyrics and actually quite enjoyed it. What surprised me, though, was when my son explained that the “E.N.D.” of the title stood for “Energy Never Dies” – what a powerful title that is!

It struck me immediately that everybody should remember this phrase, whatever their situation is. For energy is always around us, moving exactly in the direction we want it to. You keep thinking negative thoughts and the energy around you swings towards negative things happening to you. You make sure your thoughts are positive and re-assuring, and the energy reacts accordingly. This belief was proven to me recently, when all the houses on our streets got broken into, one after another over a period of time. I had decided right from the beginning that it was not going to happen to our house and sure enough, we were the only house left untouched.

I know that life can get tough, even super tough. I know that writing the words about energy is easier that dealing with some situations that life can bring upon us. Remembering, though, that everything is moving and changing all the time should be enough to keep us hopeful that one day the change will touch us too. If, on top of this, we believe this change will be positive, so it shall be.

Go on, do all you can to shape your energy the way you want to and if you feel like listening to some music along the way, the Black Eyed Peas album is highly recommended.

pátek 26. března 2010

The Easiest Way to Your Fulfillment

To feel fulfillment in our lives is one of our highest aspirations. Quite often, though, the desire to feel fulfilled means we mistake temporary achievements or gathering of possessions for this feeling of contentment.

Sure, it feels good to get a new car. We enjoy it for a while but then the excitement fades away; the new car becomes normal for us and we are off after our next pursuit. The same goes for other highlights: promotion, salary increase, new partner, bigger house.

The thing is, if we are not fulfilled inside, none of the above will make us happy over a long period of time. I believe that to feel truly fulfilled we need to fall in love with our inner selves. That emotion will carry us through anything and we will feel fulfilled, even if we have nothing.

Feeling fulfilled is not the same as feeling good. You can go through a rough day and through a range of emotions and still feel fulfilled! In fact, sometimes you actually have to go through activities that do not feel good to feel fulfilled! In my case, I started kick-boxing lessons recently in order to improve my stamina. Does it feel good to deliver punches and be sweaty within the first 3 minutes? Heck no! Do I feel fulfilled? You bet! I am trying something I have always wanted to try; I am pushing my own boundaries and feel on top of the world through it all!

Fulfillment is about being truly alive. It is about expression of who you really are. Throw away all those “shoulds” and “wants” and “must haves”. Enjoy your real, fulfilled self. It is much easier than you think.