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Hi, my name is Mitra Shahidi. I am an author, online marketer and business owner. I am married and blessed with having a loving family.

Finding Meaning in Life, Key to Satisfaction and Fulfilment

Meaning in life is found by finding your purpose in life.

To discover meaning in life, we have to find the meaning we give to life by the unfolding of our powers.

People from all walks of life share an inborn urge to find meaning in life; to discover direction and purpose in their existence.

This desire to find meaning in life appears to be as vital to our psychological development as eating to our biological continuity.

We all seek meaning in our lives and recognize meaning’s absence in lives characterized by boredom, dullness, isolation, and listless disengagement. But what is meaning in life? Is it distinctive, or reducible to other aims and conceptions? Is it a helpful category for thinking about good lives that are worth living? Is it sensible and coherent to want it in one’s life?

According to Viktor Frankl, the Austrian neurologist, psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor: “What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him. What he needs is not the discharge of tension at any cost, but the call of a potential meaning waiting to be fulfilled by him.”

Throughout our evolutionary journey, many of us spend a lot of time in the search of happiness. We attempt towards a goal more focused on a better paid job, greater status, or acquiring the latest possession, rather than spending our energy and time on things which can contribute more value and fulfilment to our lives.

“Happiness without meaning characterizes a relatively shallow, self-absorbed or even selfish life, in which things go well, needs and desire are easily satisfied, and difficult or taxing entanglements are avoided.”

Although an unfulfilled life doesn’t mean an unhappy or unhealthy life, but lack of finding a meaning in life can create anxiety, depression and low self-esteem.

Finding fulfilment and meaning in life is more about giving to others, to the community, to the environment, and to the world.

By giving, and by finding purpose, we discover satisfaction and meaning in life, but not necessarily happiness, even though it can be a by-product. Finding a meaning in life gives us a purpose to go on despite life circumstances.

Meaning and fulfilment can be found in three activities as Viktor Frankl devised in his “meaning triangle“:

  1. Creative Self-Expression: Give something to the world through expressing your own creativity in some form, whether it be through art, music, writing, good deed.  By being self-expressed we let people see our spirit and true character; they will see the totality of who we are.  And sharing of one’s “self” fully is the ultimate in generosity and is vital for finding peace, happiness and meaning in life. It’s really the state of just being yourself. And it’s also what others refer to as the state of flow; that timeless state that we’re in where we are not really aware so much of what we’re doing, it’s more of a sense of being. We’re right there in the moment; we’re in the present moment, expressing naturally who we are. And what we’re really expressing is a state of joy and fulfilment.
  1. Experiencing the world through connection, nature, culture, spirituality: Viktor Frankl wrote, realizing that our lives has reason and purpose, will enable us to understand that we are fully responsible for our lives, and for continuing them. “A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears toward a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life. He knows the “why” for his existence, and will be able to bear almost any “how.””.Our Why gives us clarity, meaning and direction. It is a filter through which we can make decisions, every day, to bring our cause to life. A Why Statement is one sentence that captures our unique contribution and impact. The contribution is the real applicable part of our Why. The impact is the condition we wish to leave the people and world around us. Together, these two components provide a meaning in life for us and those we serve.
  1. Choosing the attitude toward inevitable situations or suffering: There’s not a single person in this world that can escape from suffering. There is always a time in one’s life that they have to face unpreventable painful situation. Often, the first thing we do in a crisis is to judge what, if anything, we can do to fix the problem. But what if it isn’t fixable?  In that case, the one kind of control we can apply is to change our attitude to this new reality.   Similar to the old saying of turning lemons into lemonade. As Viktor Frankl suggested: “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing, the last of the human freedoms; to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” Suffering comes when things change – a relationship ends, someone dies, we get fired from a job, illness attacks, a disaster happens.  Sadness introduces us to impermanence and so can help us learn to let go. By having the courage to touch our own pain and suffering, we start feeling empathy for the pain and suffering of others.  We begin to see that my suffering and your suffering are the same.  “If there is meaning in life at all, then there must be a meaning in suffering.” ― Viktor Frankl

Remembering and thinking about the story of our lives, will help us to reflect back on what we have found joyful and meaningful. It can clarify the tasks which we have undertaken and have given us the most sense of meaning in life. And it may suggest further goals we might want to set for ourselves now.  These tasks can be in any realm; stories to write, children to care for, lessons to learn or teach, relationships to attend to, artistic ventures such as painting or sculpture, etc.  Meaning in life can be found in the very act of bearing witness to the events of our lives.  The most important thing is that these tasks feel meaningful to us to fulfil them.  It doesn’t matter what other people think of them. It is the knowledge that we’re born with an expiration date that drives our need for a sense of meaning in life to begin with.

As Joseph Campbell suggests: “Life has no meaning. Each of us has meaning and we bring it to life.”


How To Give To Others Builds Our Spirit

To give and not expect return, that is what lies at the heart of love.

Blessed are those who are able to give without remembering and to take without forgetting.

Give to others builds human spirit. Every act of generosity and the willingness to give of our time, our interest, concern, care, understanding, humour, loyalty conveys and nourishes love. And every missed opportunity to give and to be generous destroys our experience of love, connectedness and spirit.

In giving, it hardly matters if the love that is expressed is personal or impersonal. Being eager to give to someone who we know is wonderful. It can intensify our feelings of connection with that person. Although to give to someone who we don’t know may be less immediately rewarding, yet it expresses our awareness that other human lives matter, and the extent to which they matter is not determined by their closeness or usefulness to us.

The most intellectual healthy individuals in every community are those who are able to give without feeling diminished by generosity. They are less imprisoned by the illusion that to give something away freely leaves us with any less. They are least likely to live as slaves, protecting their own private multitude of treasures. And they may also be least mislead by the illusion that the material possessions are something that we can own on permanent basis, and to regard for safety.

The notion to give is an expression of freedom and abundance. It is a celebration of sufficiency. When done with love, it is connective, enriching and uplifting.

The ability to give is built and conveyed through the most mundane moments as well as the most profound. It is the recognition of our common humanity, an acceptance that we are all part of humankind.

The willingness to give arises out of an intention to care way beyond the limits of our own self or the group to which we are immediately attached. It is expressed in these and a thousand other ways.

Keeping our capacity for loving relationship alive demands us to be willing to give, to be generous, to be flexible and to be tolerant.

When we engage with another person, whether this is at work, a love relationship, with a member of our immediate family or a neighbour, we hardly promise to be generous. Yet the ability to give within that relationship, or the absence of it, can actually determine the quality and durability of the connection.

Sometimes the money or time are given but they are given for the sake of the donor, and not because they are what the recipient wants. That is only too easy to understand, but it doesn’t support a loving relationship and often it’s not rewarding either. To give involves two parties, at least, and flows two ways. It is often subtle, and demands that the donor has the capacity to pay close and mindful attention to whoever else is involved in the interaction.

The rich and workaholic businessman who breaks down and weeps when his wife leaves him, and cries out ‘but I gave her everything she wanted!’ is not different from the rest of us. We all learn early on to replace things for time, and praise for close attention; to build up serve-serving excuses as to why we can rarely be available and attentive even to those we declare to love best. Yet what others require from us is what we ourselves can feel most starved of: To give and to get time in which love can be cherished, nurtured and conveyed.

To give freely doesn’t begin or end with the act of giving. What precede the act of giving is at least some awareness that generosity is an expression of love. And what needs to follow is a sense of letting the act go, detaching from it, moving on into the next moment, not hanging around for a reward, a prize, or even thanks. This flow of loving, to give freely, to move on, is difficult for most of us to live out. But to give without expectation of a reward or establishing a debt that the other person will then owe us, is painfully compromised from generosity. In the face of such a demand we could even question whether this is generosity at all. Surely the only authentic expression of being generous is to act, or to be present for someone, and not expect to make them pay?

To give to others, or emptying out our own needs for the sake of others, can be an addiction, a means to avoid facing our own fear of loneliness or emptiness. But each one of us deserve better than that. The experience to give and to receive can teach us so much subtlety and discernment, about the interplay of light with darkness, and darkness with light. If to give and to receive become severely out of balance, and giving continually wear us down, it is time to ask ourselves: What do I need? How can I replenish myself? In what way am I showing love to myself also? It could be also time to ask ourselves: How to give to others generously without feeling that I am creating a sense of burden, debt, or obligation? Could I give with less attachment to the object or the outcome, and perhaps receive with less attachment in return?

When it comes to helping others, we have to be especially careful. We have to reflect on our motives and our interests. Are we willing to give because it is gratifying to us, or because there is a reward of some kind? Or are we ready to give because we really want to help others? We have to do a great deal of self-inquiry to be able to tell; we have to contemplate every ripple of thought that goes through our mind. To be compassionate, we must learn to think well of ourselves and others. Therefore a bleeding heart, which sees other people as helpless, is not a sign of compassion.


The Healing Power Of True Forgiveness

True forgiveness is when you can say, ‘Thank you for that experience’.

True forgiveness is not an action after the fact; it is an attitude with which you enter each moment.

True forgiveness is a promise not a feeling. When we forgive other people truly, we are making a promise not to use their past misdeed against them. True forgiveness is a kind of gratitude. When we forgive others we show them the mercy that we have often received and have been thankful for.
True forgiveness is an act of love. It is most healing, most profound when it grows out of humility and realism. It is a challenging act, that whether someone else is entirely to blame in a situation, and we are blameless; there is still in each one of us insufficiencies and imperfections that can be our greatest teacher.
We may not recognise true forgiveness even when we have experienced it. Yet we feel it in our body that something has left us and we are no longer carrying the load that we used to. We tend to feel sorrow instead of rage over the circumstance, and we start feeling sorry for the person who has wronged us rather than being angry with them.
The muscular tensions that we had come to assume were normal get eased. We become less vulnerable to infection or to far more serious illness. Our immune system lifts, our face muscles let down. Food tastes better, and the world looks brighter. Depression radically diminishes. We become more available to others and to ourselves.
True forgiveness doesn’t lead to forced reunions, as there may be some people whom we are better never to see, to hear from, or even think about for more than a few moments at any time. But it help us to let people go from our thoughts, to release them from any wish that could harm them, and to bring us cleansing freedom.

We may be able to discover true forgiveness in a moment, but more often it takes weeks, months or sometimes years. It is something that we have to open to it, to invite it in, and it rarely goes one way only. As we may need to learn how to forgive ourselves before we can offer our true forgiveness, face to face, or silently to others. “The most important lesson on the road to spiritual maturity is how to truly forgive.” ― Lisa Prosen
To search our way towards true forgiveness, we may need to bypass our rational mind. As it deeply offends the rational mind to forgive truly someone who has hurt us, abused us, wounded us; to forgive completely someone who has taken away the life of someone we love or has simply offended us or misunderstood us. There is no easy way to talk of bypassing it, and there is certainly no easy way to put true forgiveness into practice.
As challenging as it is, true forgiveness is the supreme virtue, the highest point of love, as it proclaims:  I will try to go on loving the life in you, the divine in you, or the soul in you. Even though I totally despise what you have done or what you stand for. What is more: I will strive to see you as my equal, and your life as having equal value to my own, although I abhor what you do and everything you stand for.
Because true forgiveness is, in its raw forms, a virtue that is disturbing and confronting as it is healing and uplifting. It is important to be clear that there is no confusion between forgiving and accepting. Extending our true forgiveness doesn’t mean that we justify the actions that caused us harm nor does that mean that we have to seek out those who have harmed us. True forgiveness is simply a movement to release and ease our heart of the pain and hatred that binds it. Forgiveness is not letting the offender off the hook. We can and should still hold others accountable for their actions or lack of actions.”

The need for true forgiveness starts with an act of betrayal, cruelty, separation or loss. Sometimes what is lost is trust. Sometimes it is a feeling of certainty about ourselves; about who we are, how we are seen, and what we stand for. The suffering that precedes the need for true forgiveness is never welcomed. It may well be the debris in our lives that we will finally and painfully turn into the gold of awareness. But we often dragged towards this knowledge only with great reluctance.
Hurt and suffering pushes us to expand our emotional arsenal, even as it pulls away the security of what is familiar. Forcing us to consider what our values are, and how they can support us; what strengths we dare own up to; and what strengths we need promptly to acquire. All of this is too invigorating to be in any way comforting. Yet as Young Eisendrath has said: “When suffering leads to meanings, that unlock the mysteries of life, it strengthens compassion, gratitude, joy, and wisdom.”
We sometimes use the word forgiveness when we are more correctly excusing ourselves for something we have done or have failed to do. Excusing doesn’t mean accepting what has been done or not done. It simply means that someone regrets what they have done; probably wishing that events could have been different; or that someone is at least optimistic that it won’t happen again; and the matter can be dropped.
True forgiveness is a different matter. It appears to enlighten another realm of experience altogether; a place that is grimmer, more depressing, more shadowy, much more confusing; a place where there is at least some element of fear, cruelty, betrayal or breaking of trust.

To extend our true forgiveness may be an act of supreme love and gentleness, but it is also tough. It demands that at least on party faces the truth, and learn something of value from it. It doesn’t involve accepting, minimising, excusing, ignoring, or pretending to forget what has been done. “Hate is not conquered by hate. Hate is conquered by love”.
Even under most dire circumstances, long before any version of true forgiveness become possible, impersonal love; the love that makes no distinction between us and all other living creatures; demands that we give up notions of vengeance. This may not mean ceasing to be angry, if angry is what you feel. True forgiveness certainly doesn’t mean pretending that things are fine when they are not. Nor does it mean refusing to take whatever actions is needed to amend past wrongs, or protect you in the future.
We often talk about true forgiveness in a way that suggests we giving something away when we forgive. Or that we accepting something in return when others forgive us. This is false. Offering true forgiveness or allowing true forgiveness to come to existence in whatever form within us, takes nothing away from us. It restores us to something that is always within us but from which we have become unbound: a sense of unity expressed through the qualities of trust, faith, hope and love.
The one who forgives never brings up the past to that person’s face. When you forgive, it’s like it never happened. True forgiveness is complete and total. ― Louis Zamperini


The Pursuit Of Personal Excellence

Personal excellence is gained by the gradual result of always striving to do better.

The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential, these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence.

Personal excellence is not about being a perfectionist. It is not a goal to be reached, a project to prove anything to anyone, satisfy anyone’s expectations, or unnecessarily stressing ourselves through being obsessive and impatient. Personal excellence is a personal resolve to do whatever we are doing the best we can, in the moment with an openness to the possibility of better ways.
Personal excellence is the life-long process of developing specific mental skills that will lead us to increase the levels of our intelligent self-direction. It is a process of becoming the best person we can be and is reflected in how we are, as well as what we do. Personal excellence is a journey of positive development beyond one’s self. It manifests in self-defined and self-valued achievements that reflect one’s best efforts.
Personal excellence is indicated in people who develop their gifts and talents to the fullest, achieving a harmony in how they think, feel, behave, and believe that leads to productive relationships and outcomes.
It seems as if those pursuing personal excellence do go about some things differently. In some cases, these behaviours are planned and quite deliberate, while in others they are implicit and not done consciously. The good news is that many of these behaviours can be learned and cultivated as we pursue our own pathway towards personal excellence.
There is nothing more satisfying than overcoming a challenge that was previously deemed insurmountable; nothing more satisfying than looking back at who you are now and realizing that you have grown much more than you thought you could. To be human is to live to our highest potential.”

Personal excellence in virtually all domains is guided by mental factors. And the experiences of exceptional performers suggest that there are six critical elements of excellence: Commitment, Belief, Full Focus, Mental Readiness, Distraction Control and Constructive Evaluation. These elements combine to form a “Wheel of Excellence” that provides a working framework to guide the pursuit of personal excellence.

  1. Commitment: The first essential ingredient guiding the pursuit of personal excellence is commitment. To excel at anything we must have or develop a very high level of dedication, self-discipline, passion, joy or love for what we are doing. We must truly commit ourselves to be the best we can be and continuously strive to make personal improvements and meaningful contributions. We require commitment to persevere through the ups and downs associated with becoming our best and maintaining our best performance in order to achieve personal excellence.
  2. Belief/Self-Confidence: Personal excellence is guided by belief in our potential, our goal, the meaningfulness of our goal, and trust in our capacity to reach that goal. Believing in ourselves and having confidence in our capacity allows us to extend our limits, create our own opportunities and push through performance barriers. Where there is firm belief in our capacity to carry out a mission and absolute connection with our performance, doors are opened to higher levels of excellence. When negative thoughts interfere with trust, performance wobbles. In the same way that belief can unlock doors, doubts can place limits on possibilities and potentials. In the presence of belief our performance blossoms; in its absence we can never touch our potential.
  3. Full Focus: Focusing is the single most important mental skill associated with performance of personal excellence. It refers to the ability to concentrate fully on what we are doing, seeing, reading, hearing, learning, feeling, observing or experiencing while we are engaged in the activity or performance. Focusing fully not only allows us to connect totally with what we are experiencing, but also frees us to perform without being disturbed by distracting thoughts.
  4. Mental Readiness: Personal excellence requires us to become skilled at getting the most out of our daily learning and living experiences. This begins with a commitment to make the most of each learning and performance opportunity. Personal excellence demands that we develop an effective way to enter a high-quality, focused performance zone on a consistent basis. We need an effective mental plan that is capable of bringing us to an intensified state of readiness for learning and performance. To excel at learning, performing, or living, we must extend an openness to learn and a commitment to an ongoing personal growth. We must engage ourselves in a continual process of self- discovery, and act upon those discoveries that lead us to our best focus and best performances. Our focus is the leader. When we discover what works best and feels best, we must follow that path, even in the face of obstacles from others who may dictate another path.
  5. Distraction Control: The fifth element of personal excellence is controlling distractions. And it refers to our ability to maintain or to regain a positive, effective focus when faced with potential distractions, negative input, or setbacks. These distractions may be external, arising from our environment, or internal, emerging from our own thoughts or expectations. Maintaining and regaining a constructive focus is an essential part of performing to our capacity on a consistent basis, whether distractions occur before, during, between or after events. Developing our ability to refocus in a positive direction is an extremely important factor affecting the consistency of our performance in all areas.
  6. Constructive Evaluation: Personal excellence entails us to develop an effective process for personal evaluation, and act upon the lessons drawn from these evaluations. Constructive evaluation includes looking for the good things and targeting areas for improvement in ourselves, our performance, and our experiences. We can draw inspiration, confidence and joy from reflecting on positive experiences and personal achievements.

“To achieve something that you’ve never achieved before, you must become someone that you have never been before.” – Les Brown


The Truth About Lie

A lie can travel halfway round the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.

A single lie discovered is enough to create doubt in every truth expressed.

If you tell the truth, it becomes a part of your past. If you lie, it becomes a part of your future.

We all know how difficult it is to trust someone again, who has lied to you before.  Trust is an important part of every relationship; and when we lie, even if we think others will never find out, we will create a barrier of hurt in our relationship. Unfortunately, when the other person finds out about our lie, and it usually is the case, it’s nearly impossible to trust again. And the damage that is done to our relationship may be irreparable.
Once we have told one lie, we may need a second lie to protect the first one, a third to protect the other two and so on. After a while our lies become so extreme that even we may have trouble keeping track of them, especially if we say a different set of lies for each person we encounter. Although most of us know this, but we still do it anyway.
Lies may appear to help us in the short term, but they harm us and others over the long haul. No matter how we might be adept at deception but we cannot fool all of the people all of the time. Fear of exposure leads us even more to self-protection, which becomes a vicious cycle. Just as our first cell duplicates itself to protect it from enemies, our ego covers up by producing more lies.  When the truth is our only solution, many of us are unable to make that transition.
Lying may seem simple and harmless at first, but just like any addiction, you’ll soon find yourself trapped and entangled more than you could have ever imagined.
Most people who lie daily have little or no awareness of how they can harm others, and they will likely keep doing it regardless. Their egos believe that their needs are more important than other’s needs, despite the fact that they are the same.
Honesty and dishonesty are learned in the home. And like everything else, children learn to lie from the people around them. Children get a lot of messages from their parents saying that lying is always bad, but at the same time they see their parents telling ‘white’ lies to make life easier.

A parent should lead by example and never lie. And when they are caught in a lie, they have to express remorse and regret for making a conscious decision to tell a lie.   Clear, understandable consequences for lying should be discussed with the child early on.
Parents are the most important role models for their children. When a child or adolescent lies, parents should take some time to have a serious talk and discuss the difference between make believe and reality, and lying and telling the truth. They should open an honest line of communication to find out exactly why the child chose to tell a lie, and to discuss alternatives to lying.
Young children often make up stories and tell tall tales. This is a normal activity because they enjoy hearing stories and making up stories for fun. These young children may blur the distinction between reality and fantasy.  This is probably more a result of an active imagination than an attempt to deliberately lie about something.
But an older child or adolescent may tell a lie to be self-serving, such as denying responsibility or to try and get out of a chore or task. This is when parents should respond to isolated instances of lying by talking with the youngster about the importance of truthfulness, honesty and trust.
There are some people who consider a lie to be acceptable in certain situations such as not telling a boyfriend or girlfriend the real reasons for breaking up because they don’t want to hurt their feelings. But this is deceiving other people because they think it serves their purposes in some way.
The big problem with lying is that it often drives one to continue his/her deceptions, and the result is that trust is shattered, reputations are damaged, and suspicion rules the day.
People lie because of countless reasons. They lie to make themselves look better. They lie to take the credit, to conceal their poor performances and mistakes, to divert the blame, to protect their reputations, and to deceive and manipulate others.
Regardless of the intention, the final results are the same.  “I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

Dishonesty and lies come in different ways and forms. There may be some people who tell lie by mistake without knowing the fact and they really believe in whatever they say. But there may be others who say lies showing no guilt or shame, knowing full well that they are deceiving others. Yet there may be others who say white lies, wishing to protect themselves or other people from the truth. Although some of these folks may have good intention, but it is all lying just the same.
As a general principle, people are always looking to see who they can trust and who they can’t. And if we refuse to lie at any circumstances, then we will be able to create lasting relationships of trust. This rule applies to all of our relationships whether it’s family, friends, or at work.
To be honest means that we do what we say we are going to do. It means that we believe in ourselves and in everything we perform. It means that we value ourselves enough not to ever live a lie. As the saying goes, “It’s simple. Never lie to someone who trusts you, and never trust someone who lies to you.”
When we operate with complete integrity, what we say will be taken at face value, our intentions will be assumed honourable, and our handshake will be as good as a contract. Most importantly, we can take great pride in the standards that we have set for ourselves and sleep well at night knowing that our conscience is clear. As for others . . . just when they think they’re fooling the world, they’ll realize that they’re only fooling themselves. A promise is a promise after all!


Positive Mental Attitude

We control our mental attitude by positive attitude not by rules.

Change your mental attitude, and the world around you will change accordingly

It is our own mental attitude which makes the world what it is for us. Our thought make things beautiful, our thoughts make things ugly. The whole world is in our own minds. Learn to see things in the proper light. ― Swami Vivekananda

Mental attitude is the way we think and talk to ourselves. Our mental attitude plays more of a role in our life that we might think. What we tell ourselves and the daily messages we allow ourselves to take in make a significant contribution toward the creation of the person we are, end up becoming or will ever be.
Think of thoughts as opportunity creators. The more positive messages we allow ourselves to have or take in, the more opportunities we will be open to realize and take advantage of.
This is why it is important for us to do our best to deal with, communicate and listen to what is good and of value. Doing so frees our mind from negativity, deception, gossip and all other harsh messages that can be destructive to our efforts of maintaining a positive mental attitude and character.
Developing a mental attitude take courage and when we combine the two, we come up with mental courage. It takes a person of great courage to be able to control their thoughts and internal messages, and filter external messages deliberately and consistently especially while living in a society where it is far from the norm.
People with positive mental attitude can push themselves through the worst life’s challenges without feeling emotional intensity. On the other hand, people with negative mental attitude are always vulnerable to suffering. Even enjoyment is less pleasing to them, as they have to work hard to get out of darkness, just to see the light.
Here are some ways that we can all work toward developing a positive outlook on life.

  1. Focus on present: by concentrating on the present as much as possible, we can minimize the worries and fears that lead to negative emotions.
  2. Use Positive Language: It is very easy to fall into the negative language pattern.  Many of us do so without being aware of it. Have you ever realized that some people constantly complain about the weather, their job, their spouse, their children, and any number of other things? Language is central to our experience of being human. And studies have shown that the languages we speak profoundly shape the way we think, the way we see the world, the way we live our lives, and as a result the way our mental attitudes shape. As Willie Nelson said: “Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you’ll start having positive results”.
  3. Stop negative thoughts: In order to maintain a positive mental attitude, learning to hit the reset button is one of the best techniques. Hitting the reset button is about taking a precautionary approach to how we respond to life and its challenges. And it prevents us from drowning in our own negative thoughts. It is the conscious effort of eliminating negativity and disillusionment as soon as it enters our mind. And it helps us not to let negative external thoughts and factors to control or affect us as much or as long.
  4. Accept things as they are: Not accepting things as they are is a fight against reality. It resists what’s real and keeps us thinking and analysing to try to make sense of it so that we feel better. But it doesn’t work, and it won’t bring us happiness. Sometimes things happen that are out of our control, and rather than wasting our energy on negative emotions, it’s better to just accept that things didn’t go the way we planned or wanted.
  5. Find positive people: We tend to take in and reflect the emotions and attitudes of those we spend time with. If we’re hanging around negative people who complain and worry much of the time, then we are bound to catch their indisposition. So the more often we keep company people with positive mental attitude, the more likely it is that we will start to think and act in the same way.
  6. Find a reason to laugh: As Mark Twain said: “Humour is the great thing. The minute it crops up, all our hardness yield, all our irritations and resentments flit away”. Laughter is fun, it touches our souls, and it is a wonderful way to reduce stress, to connect with those around us, and to make us feel better all round. Even smiling affects us in positive ways.
  7. Contribute In a meaningful way: Time has taught me that helping others is one of the simplest ways to fill our life with joy and fulfilment. And I believe that one of the best ways to feel more positive is to contribute to a society to make life worth living. Sharing our time and effort with a cause will allow us a brief escape from our current problems, and perhaps may even allow us to see our troubles in a different light.
  8. Practice gratefulness: Express your appreciation for where you are and what you have in life right now, even if feels like you still have a long way to go. Positive psychology research proves that gratitude is strongly associated with the emotions that help us enjoy greater health and happiness. And People who embody gratitude into their daily lives have a more optimistic outlook on life.

Our mental attitude will determine how far we will go in life, and a positive mental attitude can help us deal with the inevitable bumps in the road that will be on our path to success and happiness. Creating and maintaining a positive mental attitude can give us the inner strength we need to overcome adversity of any kind. As Thomas Jefferson once said: “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”


Personal Empowerment

Personal empowerment is seeking the solution rather than fixating on the problem.

Personal empowerment is taking control of our own life, setting goals, and making positive choices.

Personal empowerment is a collection of beliefs, actions and skills all working together to help you live a life that you design.
“What is empowerment? It’s not something bestowed on you. Empowerment comes from within.” – Mark Felling
At a basic level, the term ’empowerment’ simply means ‘becoming powerful’. Building personal empowerment involves reflecting on our personal values, skills and goals and being prepared to adjust our behaviour in order to achieve our goals.
Personal empowerment is about looking at who you are and becoming more aware of yourself as a unique individual.
Personal empowerment also means being aware that other people have their own set of values and goals which may be different to ours.
If you’ve ever been stuck in a rut of inertia before, you probably know the sense of helpless futility that takes over your life.  You want your life to change, but you feel powerless to do anything about it yourself.  You may find yourself constantly making plans to improve your life, but never quite getting around to taking action because it seems so intimidating.
Though taking action can intimidate and frighten you, it can also empower you!  If you learn to use it effectively, it can provide the fuel to keep you moving forward toward more fulfilling life circumstances.  When you do this, you realize that there was never anything to fear in the first place, and you’ll never get stuck again!
Below are three simple steps that show you how to get started:

  1. First, take some time to examine your life. Where are you now and where do you want to be? Be sure you understand that your life is the way it is right now because of your hesitation in taking action!  This is important, because you’ll understand the importance of moving forward no matter how anxious it makes you feel at first. Then, decide on one action to take to get the ball rolling.  Think about your life right now, and ask yourself which situations you want to change first.  You might choose your career, relationships, health, financial situation, or anything else that makes you feel powerless and stuck.  Then think about one simple action you can take to inspire some positive change.  It doesn’t have to be a huge action, just SOMETHING to start building momentum.
  2. Once you’ve decided on your action step, you’ll have to push yourself to take it no matter what!  This may seem incredibly difficult or even scary, but remember that most often the things you fear are not going to happen.  In fact, you may not even have a clear reason for feeling scared – you’re just afraid of the “unknown”.  Give yourself a pep talk or push yourself in any way you have to in order to move forward at least a little bit.  After you take that first step, be sure to let go of any expectations of the things that will happen because of it, and allow yourself to feel great simply because you did something about it!
  3. Repeat with the same step, and/or others.  Once you’ve taken one step forward, you’ll need to keep pushing yourself to take others.  Consider this:  Even if you take a hundred small steps in a month, you’ll be putting forth positive effort to make changes in your life, which cannot help but bring about better circumstances!

The good news is that taking action quickly begins to build momentum.Just as chronic non-action can create a cycle of negativity and stagnation over time, being proactive can create a positive cycle that continues to grow! It gets easier the more you do it, which eventually makes it seem almost effortless – and you continue to empower and strengthen yourself with every step you take.


Control Your Anger

Control your anger or it will control you.

Control your anger as it can cloud your ability to make good decisions and find creative solutions to problems.  It can negatively affect your work performance.

With insight about the real reasons for your anger and learning anger management techniques, you will be able to control your anger and keep your temper from hijacking your life.

Control you anger, don’t let your anger control you. The emotion of anger is not always a negative feeling to experience. In fact, being angry in some ways can be a positive outlet and something that should not be ignored. However, having rage inside that results in harmful tendencies towards ourselves or other people, and from which the source is painful experience, is not healthy at all. This type of anger should be dealt with, before it escalates into more negative experiences, as it may destroy our relationships, limit our opportunities, and even damage our health.  Control your anger because it is just ONE Letter away from danger. 

Having trouble controlling anger is a major issue in many individual’s lives. Addressing this issue can be difficult if the person is unwilling to admit to their problem and seek help. It is imperative that people be supportive and encouraging to those with anger issues. At times it may seem impossible since these people can be hurtful and even violent. Helping them to realize they need help would be the initial step to controlling their anger.
According to psychologist T.W. Smith, anger is “an unpleasant emotion ranging in intensity from irritation or annoyance to fury or rage.”
In order to control your anger, there are some anger management techniques which you can use when you find yourself in a stressful situation. But keep in mind that these strategies are only a general guide. If anger continues to be a problem, you might need to seek the help of a suitably qualified health professional, especially if your anger hurts others, or if it causes you physical pain or emotional distress.

  1. When your temper starts to raise, mentally challenge yourself before taking out your anger on others. Ask yourself these questions: What is the source of my irritation?  What is the degree of my anger? What is the other person’s actual role in the situation? Then turn the circumstances around to see how you would want to be treated if the other person felt as you do. These mental gymnastics will help you to control your anger, and regain control over your runaway emotions before they escape and cause external damage.
  2. In those moments when you feel the familiar rage start to flare, excuse yourself if others are present and take a quick walk down the hall or outdoors, depending on whether you are at home or at work, and the weather conditions. Take a 5 to10 minute stroll, especially one that is fast paced. It will help you to control your anger, and cool your irritation as you practice the fight-or-flight strategy by escaping the potential conflict. This is one of the most popular and useful anger management techniques. “A moment of patience in a moment of anger saves you a thousand moments of regret”.
  3. Another technique recommended for anger management is relaxation. Angry feelings and emotions can be calmed down by relaxing exercises such as deep breathing, relaxing imagery and slow nonstrenuous exercise similar to ygoa. When you become irritated and headed for a fit of anger, it is suggested that by breathing deeply from your diaphragm will help you to relax. Also by using relaxing imagery, allowing your mind and thought to go to a happy place, or a past relaxing experience may help you to calm down and control your anger.
  4. Problem solving is another anger management technique. It is important for an individual to discover the reason for their anger. Anger is a natural response to certain situations and at times it is an acceptable reaction but there are other incidents when the anger is not appropriate. There is a reason for the anger and to every problem there is said to be a solution. When a situation arises, the individual is taught not to focus on the solution but rather the problem. Finding ways to handle the problem and confront it is the main objective in this anger management technique. It may take a while to conform to this plan, but it is important to stick to it, as eventually the answers will come.
  5. Another great anger management technique is to write down your thoughts and emotions during a fit of anger. Sometimes sharing or talking to someone else about your feelings may only cause extra conflict. Whereas by Writing or journalizing, not only you will be able to get your feelings off your chest, but also it will help you to calm down and control your anger. Using writing as an anger management technique may also help in the future when trying to find the triggers which cause the angry outbursts. Being able to look back over the information written may provide you with reasons for your anger through reading about similar incidents.
  6. Taking a vacation, spending some alone time is another good anger management tip which can help you to control your anger tendencies. Removing yourself from the environment which seems to frustrate and irritate you may be a wise idea. Being able to get away and reflect on your actions may help you to look at things differently. Given space and time may be positive for a person with anger issues.
  7. Write out a response to a problem before tackling it orally or in debate.  This will give you time to think about the best approach to a problem rather than responding with random anger.
  8. Some people suggest prayer and meditation as anger management tips. Both of these suggestions involve very personal practices for an individual. Given a chance to pray and be alone with one’s thoughts is a good way to release tension and let the pressures of life wash away. Letting go of feelings of anger and negative thoughts would definitely make a positive change in a person’s life. Through prayer and meditation not only you are able to dig deep into your mind and soul for answers to your problems but it will also help you finding comfort and strength in your spirit to control your anger penchant.
  9. People with anger issues are taught through anger management techniques to practice better communication skills. Often a fit of anger arises because an individual misunderstood a conversation. Before giving it any thought, they become enraged and filled with anger. Anger management teaches the individual to slow down their thinking, think before they speak or react. The easily angered person needs to listen to the underlying message and try not to jump to conclusions. When feeling on the defensive side, the individual should learn not to fight back. Listening rationally to what the other person has to say might make a huge difference in a reaction.

There are many other techniques and tips which may be helpful if you are requiring help to control your anger tendencies. Tips such as get more rest, get out in nature, find humour in the situation and play or listen to music. There are also many books, movies and websites on the Internet which can provide information regarding anger management techniques and on how to control your anger issues.

Let Go of Worry

Let go of worry, of what you can’t control, and be mindful of the present moment.

Let go of worry. Worrying doesn’t help you to deal with a problem, it only makes it more difficult to find clarity.

Let go of worry. Worry and Fear dominate the thinking of so many people today. It is tragic that how negative thinking can take hold of us, dragging us down into despair.
“Worry is fear in disguise. And fear will eat you from the inside out if you let it.” ― Jim Butcher
Worry is helpful if it prompts us to take action and resolve a problem, but it can become destructive when we find it hard to let go, and our minds become engaged with worst-case scenarios.
Sometimes, there are real reasons to worry; the rising cost of living, public-sector cuts, job insecurity. But there are many instances when we all become distressed for no logical reason, which has an impact on creating anxiety.
Everyone worries from time to time. But for some people, “worry is a way of life”.
The college student who spends half of his time worrying about radioactive fallout knows nothing of real living. Sure he can try to realistically improve the situation. He can write his congressman or organize a group to discuss the problem; but when he buries his being in worry, this is only self-destruction.

The young mother whose thoughts are full of anxiety about her children is also wasting her time. Not that she shouldn’t teach them about life’s dangers, not that she shouldn’t try to protect them from crisis, but after that, why the self torture? It won’t help
Let go of worry, of all these worries about the events that might happen in the future, or about things you can’t change, and more, you can justify if you wish. You can tell yourself you are only realistic, but you are really not.
When we substitute worry for living, we must take responsibility for it. Because it is really up to us; we can let go of worry and make our days inspiring, or we can make them miserable.
Still if you haven’t been able to let go of worry, and have wasted some of your life moping, don’t blame yourself for it. You are not perfect, no one is, and self-blame will not help you. Just read what I have to say and see if my ideas won’t help you to live more meaningfully.
“I vow to let go of worries and anxiety in order to be light and free.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Practice positive thinking in order to let go of worry. It allows you to focus on your strengths and accomplishments, which increases happiness and motivation. This, in turn, allows you to spend more time making progress, and less time feeling down and stuck. We all encounter roadblocks from many sources in our lives, but we can overcome them only if we adopt positive attitude toward ourselves, and if we see ourselves as someone we like, as someone with whom we would like to be friends.
If you want to let go of worry, you must understand, first the incredible power of your mind; for good or bad. It is not easy to comprehend that in a world of superhighways and skyscrapers, of atomic energy and astronauts speeding through outer space, it is the simple concepts and images in your mind that can make you happy or miserable. You must understand that, though we seem to hear mostly the negative, there are two sides to the coin. Even within the many confines of civilization, the human being may still be free and happy.
“A positive attitude gives you power over your circumstances instead of your circumstances having power over you”

The following tips provide practical suggestions which can help you to shift into more positive thinking patterns, and let go of worry:

  1. Remind yourself of the things you are grateful for: Always concentrate on the little joys that happen in your life throughout a day. Allow these moments of delight carry you over the ones with distress and hopelessness, and record them in a gratitude journal. This exercise will help you to open your eyes and have more appreciation for what you have in your life and help you to let go of worry.
  2. Detach yourself from negative thoughts: Thoughts can be very powerful in generating negative and distressing feelings. And distressing feelings can in turn be a strong driver for negative and unhelpful behaviours which discourage us from living our lives according to our values and priorities. Therefore it is useful to develop the ability to stop, step back, take a deep breath and examine our thoughts to determine their accuracy or helpfulness. In this way we are able to accept, listen to, follow those thoughts that are accurate or helpful; and reject those thoughts that are inaccurate or unhelpful..
  3. Take good care of yourself: Exercise, proper nutrition, and getting enough sleep make it easier to maintain a positive attitude. A healthy diet creates a nourished body and mind and sustains high performance in everyday life. And being physically active regularly increases energy levels, reduces stress and promotes health. Getting the appropriate amount of exercise benefits our mental health and mood. It promote releasing the body’s feel-good hormones, lowering the stress hormone, and making it easier for us to let go of worry and negative thoughts.
  4. Change your perspective: Everything is energy, our thoughts begin it, our emotions amplify it, and our action increase the momentum. Energy flows where we focus our attention. We have a choice to direct or focus our thoughts on either positive or negative. So what happens when our thoughts become negative, repetitive, distorted, and intrusive? Naturally, they turn destructive; they affect us, they impact our results, our success, and our health. There are ways to deal with them: The first way is to send STOP command to our mind to interrupt the progression of those destructive thoughts, and then SWAP them by positive thoughts. Always keep a list of positive, happy, healthy, constructive thoughts, and swap away. And the second way is as Dale Carnegie, has explained in his book, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living book: “First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it. Then proceed to improve on the worst.” So, ask, accept and proceed.
  5. Nurture your relationships: When we nurture our relationship with our loved ones, it can contribute to far greater happiness than any money or material things that we could possess. We are all on this earth for a limited time. Spending time with family and friends, listening to them, laughing with them, hugging them, supporting them and being there for them is worth more than anything else we could ever give. Love and affection can have many positive effects on our mental health and mood. Studies have shown a decrease in stress hormones in people who feel a sense of support and a bond with someone, even by phone or email.
  6. Increase Your Social Activity: People have a huge impact on our lives. Surround yourself with happy people, who will uplift and encourage you. Their positive energy can affect you in a positive way, and decrease your loneliness. “Surround yourself with people who make you happy. People who make you laugh, who help you when you’re in need. People who genuinely care. They are the ones worth keeping in your life. Everyone else is just passing through.” – Karl Marx
  7. Relax by giving yourself some time: For most of us life can get busy and pretty full sometimes. So always make sure to set aside some time every day to relax reading a book, sitting in the garden with the sun on your face, or doing meditation. You’ll find that your feelings of anxiety subside and you let go of worry. Go to bed early at night time, so you can feel your best and fresh the next day after having enough sleep.
  8. Smile: Smiling to others and ourselves is a gift of love. It triggers happy feelings in the brain, reduces stress and help us to let go of worry and negative thoughts. A deep inner smile spreads like a relaxing medicine, making us responsive to transforming negative energy into positive. Smile therapy lowers the stress hormones and produces hormones that relax muscles, reduce pain, and stabilise mood. But even if you don’t feel like smiling, can you fake it till you make it? As even a surface smile tricks the brain into releasing happy hormones. So never underestimate the power of a smile. Use yours and you’ll find it helps you to disperse sadness, dissolve stress, and uplift your mood.
  9. Live in the moment: To live in the moment, or now, means being conscious in the present with all of our senses. Joy is often about living in the moment, being absorbed in what we’re doing, not grieving on the past or worrying about the future. By grasping each moment of our life, we will be able to prolong its value and make it more meaningful. It doesn’t mean that we don’t need a plan, a goal or prepare ourselves for the future. We can decide what we really want and go for it, but still enjoy each moment as it unfolds. Worry and fear are most often experienced when we are inactive and thinking about the future. By being fully present and engaged, putting our hearts and souls in something we do, we are able to let go of worry and replace destructive thoughts with the rush of pure excitement. When we become positive and optimistic in the present, we open the possibility of a positive and promising future. “You don’t have to control your thoughts. You just have to stop letting them control you” – Dan Millman


Personal Motivation Is the Key to Success

Personal motivation is what pushes us to achieve our goals, feel more fulfilled and improve overall quality of life.

Personal motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going. 

Personal motivation is the key to success. It is a combination of determination, expertise, and purpose to maintain in order to achieve a high level of success.

Self-motivation is the inner power, an internal drive that pushes us to keep moving forward, to develop, to produce, and to achieve. When we find ourselves ready to quit something or we just don’t know how to start; it is our self-motivation which pushes us to go on. It is the internal voice that says, “I am an autonomous person who has power over my choices and my actions. I can affect positive changes in my life if I work for them”.
“The road to success is not easy to navigate, but with hard work, drive and passion, it is possible to achieve your dream”
“Personal motivation is an internal, impalpable force that causes a person’s effort, drive and persistence toward the achievement of a worthwhile goal. The degree and strength of an individual’s personal motivation is the single most important factor in determining the extent to which he or she will commit to do what needs to be done to achieve the desired result. Without personal motivation, little of any significance is usually achieved in spite of the existence of the necessary knowledge skills and resources. With it, anything is possible regardless of whether or not those elements are present”.
It is easy enough to dream and plan, but many people get stuck in this phase indefinitely and avoid taking action.  Planning and dreaming might make you feel like you’re doing something about your goals, but if you never actually take a step forward you’ll never achieve them.  In order to see measurable progress, you have to step out of your comfort zone and take action.
“People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity, no matter how impressive their other talents” –Andrew Carnegie
When you finally do gather your courage and begin moving forward, what usually happens?  You realize it’s WAY harder than you thought it would be, right?  It feels like you’re trying to run uphill.  You keep tripping over obstacles, facing setbacks and delays, dealing with fear and anxiety, and fighting a daily battle to find motivation to keep moving forward.
It’s during this difficult phase that most people give up.  They decide that “it isn’t meant to be” right now, so they set their goal aside and promise to try again later.  Or worse, they resign themselves to a mediocre life because they don’t believe they have what it takes to succeed.  They’ve “failed,” so they’re not going to try any more. Have you done this?  Most people have! However, this doesn’t have to be the end of the story.  You can pick up your dreams, dust them off and try again.  “Every strike brings me closer to the next home run”.
Most people quit during the difficult phase because they think it’s ALWAYS going to be this hard.  What they don’t realize is that every effort they put toward the achievement of their goals will build on the previous efforts.  With every step forward the process gets easier and easier.  Finally, they’ve put so much energy and effort into the process that the internal drive begins to take over.  Suddenly they realize that they don’t have to push so hard to keep moving forward.  It becomes fun, even easy to achieve their goal.
“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed” ― Michael Jordan
This same experience can be yours!  All you have to do is keep moving forward. Keep working toward your dreams and never quit.  Your internal force WILL take over eventually!
If you want to get that force working even more quickly for you there are a few ways to do it, but they can be summed up in one sentence:
Be willing to work harder, faster and take bigger risks than you have in the past
“A ship is always safe at the shore – but that is NOT what it is built for.” ― Albert Einstein
The reason why this internal drive can be delayed, is because sometimes many people take very tentative steps toward their goals.  They’re afraid to really give it their all, so they hold back much of the energy and power they could be devoting toward their goal.  Even if they’re not aware of it, they may feel more comfortable working at a slower pace, so they avoid taking big risks and instead they take baby steps
There’s not a thing wrong with this approach if it suits you!  However, if you want to make faster progress and to achieve your goal quickly, think about taking bigger steps and giving your full energy and focus toward making it happen.  By doing so, you’ll push through the difficult beginning and find yourself coasting before you know it.
 “There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”  ― Nelson Mandela
As Zig Ziglar said, “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing; that’s why we recommend it daily”. Whenever you’re struggling to get things done, turn to that quote for the inspiration and personal motivation you need to be the best you can be.