How to express gratitude to yourself

It is often said, that we are own worst enemies. It’s said so often that it has become cliché. The trouble with cliché is that buried within it – is truth.

Even the best people can find themselves at war with their own interests; they throw themselves into charity work, community work, business, family, etc. and all to avoid acknowledging their own needs.

Soon, they find that nothing they do is ever “good enough.” How could it be? If you set yourself impossible targets and dive into everything and never spend so much as a second on self-care; you’re going to end up exhausted and miserable.

If this sounds like you, I want you to know – there is good news. You can make a dramatic change, today, here and now that will benefit you every day for the rest of your life. This change costs no money and is incredibly easy to do.

Thank Yourself For Being You

Seriously, that’s it. If you’re not feeling appreciated in your life; the best source of validation is not in other people – it’s in you. And if you begin by showing gratitude to yourself for being you; very soon, you’ll feel more peaceful, more cantered and more capable of tackling anything life throws at you.

Here are some tips on saying “thank you” to yourself:

  • Stop beating yourself up when you’re not progressing towards a goal. Start saying “well done” for how far you have already come, instead.
  • Whenever you catch yourself saying something negative about yourself, take a step back, stop and think of something positive to say. Then say it.
  • Let some vanity and sincerity in. Find a mirror, right now, and go look yourself in the eye and meaningfully thank yourself for being you. “You’re awesome! Thanks for being me!” will do nicely.
  • Make a list of ten qualities that you recognize in yourself as valuable and which would matter to others too. Keep that list in your pocket. If you feel down; get it out and look at it. You rock!
  • Now make a list of ten times you made a positive difference in other people’s lives. Write that down too. Keep it in your bag or your wallet. Once again, if you feel blue – get it out and revel in your own hard-earned awesomeness!
  • Treat yourself. If you had a partner do something special for you, you’d treat them to something nice. Well, you do something special for you every single day – take yourself out on your own and celebrate that fact.
  • Make time for yourself. Seriously, you owe yourself at least 30 minutes of fun every single day of your life. Whether it’s gym time or computer game time that you crave – make room for it. Nobody ends their life wishing they’d spent more time in the office. So leave work earlier and have fun.
  • When people compliment you – don’t brush it off. Instead, work out how to accept compliments with grace and kindness. Positive reinforcement from others never hurts. You are special and when people tell you so, listen and thank them for noticing.

There are many other ways for you to thank yourself for being you but this should get you started. Remember, every single person on this planet is truly amazing and you are too. Feel better, feel free and say “thank you” for everything you do for you.

Your Inner Voice Is Getting In Your Way: How To Make It Stop

If you are your own worst critic; you’re not alone. It’s quite amazing how many people’s worst enemy is not some criminal stalking them but themselves. Being self-critical is a valuable skill in small doses but when you are overly critical all the time – you stop yourself from being able to grow.

Your inner critic in essence has stopped being constructive and has turned into a mean-spirited bully and you can’t ever get away from them. So, you need to do something else entirely – you need to get them to shut up.

Fortunately, this isn’t as big a task as it might seem when that bully is in full flow. It’s surprisingly easy to turn off the negative and turn on the positive. Here are 5 simple ways to silence your inner bully.

Treat It Like An Evil Goblin

If you’ve ever seen Labyrinth with David Bowie, then you’ll know that goblins are not lovely elves but rather misshapen and malevolent fantasy beings. They break things and cause chaos wherever they go. But… here’s the thing, they’re also small and easy to deal with if you tackle them head on.

You can pretend that your inner critic is a goblin whispering poison in your ear from a position on your shoulder. What would you do if it was a goblin? You’d flick it off with your hand, wouldn’t you? Well, that’s exactly what you should do.

This is a way of building a mental defence with a physical trigger. It’s not a silly game, it’s supported by science.

Make A List Of Your Own Awesomeness

There is an old salesman’s trick that goes like this. “What I like to do when making a decision is to list all the positives and all the negatives and then pick the action based on the list with the most items on it.”

They then cheat by helping the customer come up with positives while ignoring the negatives. It gets the sale every time.

You can cheat too. Make a list of your own positives. Read it whenever the bully comes to call. Remind yourself that you rock. Send the bully packing because it has no help and it won’t come prepared with a list.

You’ll feel great when you write the list too. So, bonus happy there for you.

Make The Bully Seem Ridiculous

If a bully made a fool out of themselves at school, they immediately lost some of their power, didn’t they? Well, it works on your inner bully too.

Think of a ridiculous ending to a sentence. I quite like to use “because I live in Superman’s underwear draw.” You can make up your own.

When the inner voice comes calling – add that phrase to the end of every sentence it throws at you. You’ll be laughing in no time and that means, it will have lost its power over you. Easy, right?

Be Lovely To Someone Else

The inner bully always disappears in the face of niceness. It’s a strange fact but true all the same. One of the easiest ways to chase it away is simply to pick someone in your environment and pay them a sincere compliment. This creates incongruence in your head and the bully simply vanishes.

Take A High-Level View

Get a satellite image of the earth and then pin your approximate location on it. When the voice comes calling tell yourself, “in the scheme of all this – I have just as much right to be and to be happy as anyone.” Watch it go running.

Conclusion

Your inner critic can add value but if it’s transforming or has transformed into a bully – then it’s time to get tough with it. You see, you do deserve to be happy and you are awesome. Now, you just need the headspace to show that to the world. So use these tips next time the bully comes calling. You’ve got this covered.

The Beliefs That Can Help You Power Through Life

If there’s one tragedy in life, it is this – billions of people are trapped by their own beliefs into leading lives that are less fulfilling and less amazing than they ought to be. They have been taught to frame themselves in the negative and their beliefs that they cannot do things are self-fulfilling.

Yet, it is easy to see such beliefs as false when you place them under examination. Better still, it is relatively simple to restate such beliefs in a true context so that they empower us to succeed rather than cause us to fail.

Here are some limiting beliefs and new ways to see them to free your mind and soul to achieve great things:

Limiting Belief – “I Can’t Be Me”

“I can’t be me. I might be judged for it.”

It’s easy to see how this might stop someone from embodying their true-self, isn’t it? If you’re scared that other people are sneering at you, why try at all?

The good news is that you can reject this belief. Try replacing it with these two instead:

“It is not my role in life to please other people.”

“I can be me. There will never, in all of history, be another person like me.”

The good news? These beliefs are true. They free you from the limiting belief and replace it with a positive.

Limiting Belief – “They Might Say No”

This is usually expressed as, “I can’t ask for what I need, what if someone says no?”

The fear of rejection is a peculiar one. It stems from being part of a social species. It hurts when we are rejected. Yet, the fear is often debilitating and not real. It just holds us back.

These beliefs are better:

“Everybody hears ‘no’ at some point in life. Each ‘no’ carries us closer to ‘yes’.”

And… “If I don’t ask for something, you probably won’t get it.”

This may be one of the biggest signs of successful people. When they let go of the fear of rejection, life becomes much easier.

Limiting Belief – “I Can’t Trust People”

Sure, “I can’t trust people they might betray my trust.” might feel true. But in reality, if you don’t trust people, how can you expect to work with them and to benefit from their help and love as you help and love them?

A fear of something that may never come is not your friend. Many people are completely trustworthy and given your trust they will grow it into something amazing with you.

These beliefs will help you strengthen your bonds with others:

“Unless someone shows they are untrustworthy, they are deserving of my trust.”

“I must trust people, in order to form meaningful relationships.”

All Limiting Beliefs Can Be Reversed

If you have a limiting belief in life, it can be reversed. Nothing you believe needs to be objectively true, unless you really want it to be. Freedom in life comes from choosing the right beliefs for your mindset.

Running A Small Business Is Stressful

If feels like stating the obvious but running a small business may be one of the most stressful things in the world. In larger businesses – responsibility is shared for most things. But in a small business, one person often carries nearly all of the weight.

That doesn’t mean, however, that running a small business has to be stressful. There are ways to improve productivity and lower your costs without being stressful for you. Here’s how:

Create A Clear Vision Of What You Want

I’m not talking about writing a fancy vision statement (as marketing departments love to do) but I am suggesting that you visualize what “success” looks like within your business’s context.

After all, if you don’t know what it looks like, how will you know when you get there? Also, it’s important because it allows you to build a series of sense checks for decision making.

If you can see where your future lays, you can ask, “Does this action bring us/me any closer to the future I envisioned? If not, why not? Should I let this go or make changes in my vision?”

You can, of course, change your vision but most of the time, you won’t want to. Knowing where you want to go, lets you see the route more easily. It lets you stop wasting time on things that aren’t important to your business. The more time you free up to do important things, the less stressed you will be.

It will also improve productivity (you’ll have more time to do things) and reduce costs (you won’t spend money on pointless pursuits). Pretty easy, right?

Don’t Be Afraid To Seek Help

You are not superhuman. No one person can have all the skills and talents necessary to make a successful business in today’s society.

Do not be afraid to seek help. You might want a mentor (someone who has succeeded in your field or a related field already) who can help guide you through the growing pains of your business life. Reach out to a professional association or via Linked In or a local networking group – these people not only exist but are often delighted to help.

You might need an answer to a quick query (you’d be amazed at how easy it is to find an expert online and get a response instantly) or anywhere in between these two points.

It’s also possible to outsource the tasks you hate the most or at which you suck the most. Life can feel much better if you can give the accounting to an accountant or the mailing to a postal outsourcing service.

You don’t have to do everything. You do need the help of others. It’s not embarrassing to realize this. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – humans are social creatures, we’re happiest in groups. Forming a group of people around you to help with your business is the smartest thing you can do. Start today.

You Have The Right To Choose

How many times have you heard someone say, “I wanted to do something but something else got in my way?” A lot, I would imagine. I know I have.

You see the most pernicious lie that people tell themselves is that they have no control over their lives. They are passive bystanders to whom life happens.

This is a limiting belief and the enormity of it is frightening. If you truly believe you have no control over life, that it is nothing but a fairground ride for which you have a ticket, then you will have no control (or very little control) over what happens to you.

Breaking This Mindset

This mindset needs breaking. Outside of the unfortunates trapped in modern slavery or incredible poverty, we are in the most fortunate period in history.

You have endless choices. You have the ability to be anything or do anything. This is because of the incredible abundance of the technological era. While there is still disease, it is by and large controlled and remote for most of our lives.

There is unlimited education available and much of it for free (or at a very low cost) and the Internet has meant that even the most financially challenged of souls can start their own business and become their own boss and, as importantly, develop their financial freedom.

So, the only thing standing in your way is you.

It’s Not As Hard As You Might Think

The easiest way to stop believing a lie is to confront that lie. To keep repeating the truth until it takes the place of the lie that has developed its own pathways in the brain.

We know, in our hearts, that we make our own choices. You don’t have to sit in watching TV tonight, you could be starting a business.

You don’t have to go to college to study medicine to please your parents, if you want to – you can study fashion just like you always wanted.

So, we need a mantra.

You can choose your own but the essence is this: “I am in control of my life. I will make decisions that benefit me. I will not apologize for this but will continue to act with caring, compassion and kindness to others even if they do not support my decisions.”

By repeating your mantra (rephrase the one above or create your own) on a regular basis, it will become a “script” in your brain. The next time you find yourself making a decision to please someone else, rather than to please yourself – review your mantra, then and there on the spot.

Then, accept the blessing you have been given in life. Make your choice. Accept that choice in your soul as the one that you want. Then own the responsibility for your choice. The good and the bad. There is no perfect decision in life, but you can live life on your terms. In my experience that makes people happier and more successful in all walks of life.

How Is Your New Year’s Resolution Going?

Chances are your New Year’s resolution has been abandoned … want to know why?

Every year, thousands of people lurch to the finishing line of the year armed with their New Year’s Resolutions, only to get to February and give up.

How is your’s going? Are you on track? Or have you already abandoned them because it is too hard, takes too long or some other reason?

New Year’s Resolutions are like taking putting a Band-Aid on broken leg. The problem with setting goals around a new year is many people expect this one moment to change their life, when they have not done any prep work to really implement changes into their life.

That time of the year is a metaphorical reset button for so many. A chance to make changes, do something different, or to take a different path. What research is showing is 8 to 12 percent of people who set resolutions follow them through.

This means most people are left feeling like they have failed, and this has significant impact on self-belief.

The problem lies in a society that is so geared to instant gratification. We’ve forgotten how to see that time and energy is needed to make any change in life.

We are born into a purchasing style economy. If there is a problem in our life – we can buy a product and that is our solution. That how many see New Year’s Resolutions – as a quick fix.  It creates the perception the solutions are outside of us.

Think of making changes in life like steering a big cruise ship. There is no way you can get that ship to turn on a dime by yanking the wheel.  It takes time to turn the ship. It takes knowing where you are headed and an understanding there may be obstacles in the way.

For the ship to keep turning, you have to keep your hand on the wheel and not give up when it does not turn straight away.

I know. The path I was on in 2016 wasn’t the one I wanted to be on. As a successful commercial management consultant, I knew I wanted to do more with my life. I wasn’t sure what that was, just that I wanted to make the changes necessary to begin my new journey. I set about changing his life. To get my ship to turn, I knew I needed six months to get my plan into action.

It was a major piece of work. But what I knew was I am the master of my universe and for the changes to happen I must be prepared to put in the effort and stay resolute, even when things did not always go right. I knew what I wanted. When things went wrong, it was not the Universe telling me this was the wrong thing to do, it was the Universe asking me how badly I wanted the changes.

This is why New Year’s Resolutions do not work, for most people. They do not accept they are the master of their destiny. They are too quick to blame others for things that go wrong. They do not take the time to set a plan in motion.

If you want to lose weight, it going to take time. If you want to heal a broken relationship, it takes time.  To turn your ship, you must have resolute faith that all the things you are doing will keep you heading in the new direction. Hitting the reset button on your life on January 1 with planning or preparation – changing your mindset and attitude – will not happen if you go into it with your current thinking. That is how you go to where you are now.

Your ‘New Year’s” can be any date you wish. It doesn’t have to be January 1.

When we know we can have a New Year’s Resolution do over every year, there is no need to fully commit. There is a 1 Jan every year. That is why it doesn’t work.  You can just do it again next year.

To successfully make an Any Time Of Year’s Resolution:

  • commit to it ahead of time
  • take control of your intentions
  • have a better understanding of the current problems or issues, and what needs to change
  • Understand the journey and what may crop up to get in your way, testing your resolve
  • be accountable for your choices – not to a coach or someone else; to yourself

Remember, there is no such thing as failure. Just trial and error. If things do not work out, you still get a result, you still got data.  It just means it is time to try something different.

Manifesting Works For Business

The word ‘manifesting’ is normally attached to so called ‘woo woo’ people who talk about attracting good things into your life with the power of your thoughts.  But if you understand how powerful our minds are, there is nothing woo woo about it.

Every single human has the power to use their thoughts for good. We really are what we think and when we think good thoughts, we do benefit from the results. Using our thoughts, feelings and actions we can manifest what we want to happen in business; not just for that new sports car or overseas holiday but the type of business we want to run and the clients we want to attract.

It is not magic. It is not weird and wonderful. It is a power that, as we research it more and more, we better understand the power of the mind. The universe is made up of energy. We are energy. Thoughts are energy. When we focus that energy on either good or bad, like attracts like. This means whatever we focus on – good or bad thoughts, statements and actions – can manifest.

If you are wondering why you keep attracting those painful clients, or why no one pays your invoices on time or why you are always late to meetings, it starts and ends with your thoughts, feeling and actions.

Simply put, you get what you focus on.

Of, course, no one really asks for bad things to happen to them. At least not consciously. However, how we respond to what happens to us, determines whether that event was a positive or a negative one.

How do you get what you want in business?

It is a three-step process – Recognise, Reflect and Resolve. Every time you catch yourself spiralling down the negative pathway, do this …

Recognise

Stop. First we need to Recognise what is going on in your life? My book ‘Free from Fear’ can help you with the process of recognising where you are at. All of us have a parrot on our shoulder talking rubbish in our ear; quite often we are not conscious of this. This lack of awareness allows this script to play over, and over, eventually taking complete control over our life experience.

Recognise it as your ego. Ego wants to keep you where you are. Recognise you are not the thoughts in your head; those thoughts are not real.  When you become aware of your own behaviour, you can change.  

I remember a really nice guy I went to school with. He was smart, good looking – women loved him – and good guy. Yet, because he was an orphan, he had this script playing in his head that he had been left behind, abandoned. This played out through his whole life. Culminating in a viscous cycle of substance abuse and gambling. His life did not have to be like that, but he was trapped by his unconsciousness, which manifested all the bad into his life. Of course, he had a choice. We all have choices – he just chose to take that path, albeit unconsciously.

Reflect

No one wants to have negative experiences or wants a life of unhappiness, so the next step is to Reflect. What would prefer to happen, what is the alternative to this negative life experience? If you are having an argument or conflict with someone, reflect on what that is bringing up in you and them.  By understanding what the problem is, what creates the issue, you can then determine what you would rather happen.

Think of it like this – every interaction has a point A – current state – and a point B (what we want to be true. We often get lost in how to get to point B. This where reflection comes in. It is not as hard as we think; the problem in itself is simple but the problem with simple is a lot of people do not do it. They discount it as unhelpful

Resolve

To reach a resolution, a way through the cycle of negativity is to ask ‘what would love do?’. Love is the ultimate in the universe. When it comes to manifesting a great life, this is the point we always want to come back to.  Would love get angry back? Would love be nasty? Would love seek revenge? No, love would not. You cannot resolve an issue by holding onto it. We’re not talking romantic love, but unconditional love. Conflict and negativity come from darkness, from fear. Dark cannot survive in the presence of light. The path to a great life is dealing with the negative in a different way.

Einstein is attributed with quote ‘you cannot change anything with same energy that created it,’.  If you create a situation out of fear, anger, hate, you cannot resolve situation with the same to it. You only make it bigger.  The only way to Resolve it is to add the opposite energy to the situation to dispel it. To combat fear driven experiences, choosing Love and doing what Love would do, will resolve it, almost immediately.