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Living A Simple Life

Living a simple life – With the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives, we can often find ourselves yearning for a quieter, simpler way of living.  If your life has come to resemble an endless race to the finish line, take a look at the suggestions below to bring a greater sense of calm, simplicity and peace back into your life.

1) Less is more.  It’s amazing how much “stuff” we can accumulate in our homes because we think they’ll contribute to our lives.  It’s true that we gain enjoyment from material possessions, but the more we accumulate the more burdened we often feel.  Eventually we find ourselves living under a constant cloud of confusion, scattered thoughts and stress.

Begin immediately to clear out the material possessions you no longer need or want, and donate them to a local charitable organization.  This will accomplish two things:  first, you’ll feel lighter and less cramped in your home; and you’ll also feel good about giving these items to people who need them and can actually use them.

“The greatest step towards a life of simplicity is to learn to let go.”   Steve Maraboli

2) Pare down your activities.  An active life is good for you, but not if it leaves you feeling stressed and fatigued!  Most of us take on much more than necessary as far as obligations and even recreational activities are concerned.

Take a few minutes to think about the things you do on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.  Do you really need to do all of them?  Have you taken on responsibilities that really aren’t yours?  Are you spending time on activities you no longer enjoy?  Make a list of at least a few activities or obligations that you can eliminate, and then go ahead and do so – even if you have to pare them down gradually.

“People who use time wisely spend it on activities that advance their overall purpose in life” John C. Maxwell

3) Spend time in silence. There are times when you are so used to doing everything in a hurry that you don’t notice how fast-paced your life has become. A deceptively simple way to live a life of simplicity and ease is to shut out the mental and physical “noise” of your busy life on a regular basis.  Sitting in silence for just a few minutes can drastically reduce your stress levels and leave you feeling calm, centred and happy.

If you live near a park or natural setting, you can even boost the effectiveness of this activity by spending time in nature.  While not completely silent, natural settings have soothing sounds like running water, singing birds and wind sighing through trees – which automatically trigger feelings of peace and well-being. Find fulfilment in the simple things in life by spending time with friends, or building something with your own hands. Intrinsic rewards will improve your motivation and overall satisfaction with your life

“In your silence, when there are no words, no language, nobody else is present, you are getting in tune with existence” Osho

4) Identify your values. Think about the things that are important to you that influence the way you act and ultimately the person you are. These are values. They are a guiding force in decision making. Identifying your values can be a challenge, but it is worth the effort.

To identify your values, think about the times in your life when you were the happiest, most proud, most fulfilled and satisfied. Make a list and determine what you valued about those situations. Perhaps you value the creativity, adventure, loyalty and hard work each of these situations provided. Maybe you realize that you value your family the most. These will be a driving force in everything you do. If you want to live a simple, peaceful life, then you might value serenity, resourcefulness, stability, and health.

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind a faithful servant.  We have created a society that honours the servant and has forgotten the gift.”  Albert Einstein

5) Align your activities with your values. Take part in activities which are in harmony with your values and desire to live a simple life. You are more happy and satisfied when your activities are in line with your values. Refuse offers to events that conflict with your intent to live peacefully. Make a decision to live a value-driven life. When you know, what your core values are, you have an incredibly powerful tool to access your ‘sacred gift.’  By naming a value, you can quickly step into what that value means to you; what it really feels like when it’s present in your life.  And, you can use these feelings as energetic pointers when making decisions, big and small; decisions you know will lead you to a meaningful and happy life. This is what living a value-driven life is all about.

“Living in a way that reflects one’s values is not just about what you do, it is also about how you do things”

6) Live in the present moment.  As humans we tend to spend a lot of time thinking about the past or about the future. We think about what was and what could have been. A wandering mind is an unhappy mind. The key to solving this problem is simplifying your thoughts and staying focused on what you are doing at that moment. You have to realize that the present time is all there ever was and probably will be. By doing visualization exercises to imagine yourself in a simple, peaceful, stress-free environment, and Engaging in conversation or exercise you will be able to help quiet your mind and stay focused in the present moment.

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.”  Eckhart Tolle

7) Practice empathy and compassion to create peace. Each human being exists within the context of interrelationships that include other human beings, all living beings and the natural world. The ability to appreciate someone else’s struggle is an important skill to develop. You know how you would like to be treated, so use that as a guide when trying to treat others. As Lou Holtz says: “Do right. Do your best. Treat others as you want to be treated”. Practicing empathy and kindness is the core skill for what psychologists call “pro-social” behaviour – the actions that are involved in building close relationships, maintaining friendships, and developing strong communities. It appears to be the central reality necessary for developing a conscience, as well.

“You never really know a man until you understand things from his point of view, until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” Lee, Harper

When it comes right down to it, living a simple and peaceful life is about learning how to slow down, connect more deeply with your inner self and live a conscious life.  Whether you do that by simplifying your surroundings, calming your schedule or enjoying a quiet respite each day, the result is the same – having a simple yet meaningful life and a happier and more peaceful you!

“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”  Aristotle


Becoming a better you

Becoming a better you requires willingness and open-mindedness for change and growth. One thing about life is that it is never static. Change is inevitable, it happens all the time. If you ever want to become that person you ever wish to be then you have to keep pace with changes. On my person, I have a favourite phrase: “Change is the essence of life. Be willing to surrender what you are for what you could become”. It has made me a better person; not perfect but every day I have something to be proud of.

Many are the days we are driven by abstract situations and we do not want to accept reality or the changes that we are expected to make. In that we can never become a better person. Yes, there are so many hurdles to being good but losing the ‘self’ in you is detrimental. I do not want you to lead a bad path (I have seen many people get lost for good) and that is why I share a week’s formula to become a better you;

Be a servant

How often do you serve others? There is a lot of gratification in giving service to others. Be there for those close to you or those who need you. It does not matter your position but be a servant.

“Service to humanity is the act of making sacrifices for people we don’t necessarily know or have any close connection with, simply by virtue of our spiritual connection to them as part of one universal spiritual family. It is an act that, when replicated by many, results in material progress and the advancement of human civilization. Additionally, the act of service to humanity has the power to unite the hearts of all mankind, as individuals and societies develop their spiritual capacities.”

List your values

You are more valuable than you think. You have priceless values and every decision or goal you make should resonate with those values. Your 2016 resolutions should underline your values and it will be a year of change that you will live to remember.

“No one can determine your value except you. Stop on self-limiting beliefs. Embrace your self-worth”

Know that you have a purpose

You are not just wandering all over the world waiting for you date with death. You have a purpose and finding it will make your life worth living for. It doesn’t matter what age you are. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, or what you do. As long as you wish to live a more meaningful and conscious life, a life purpose is for you. For example you could   inspire and unleash creativity in some individual, help people discover their worth, break their barriers, and realize their hopes and dreams, or educate and enable people to achieve their best health and hence, live a happier and healthier life. Find it and you will never regret a single day.

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honourable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Appreciate your strengths

You may not be the best you wish to be but you have strengths that nobody else has. No matter how insignificant you think your strengths are; someone else wishes they were you.

“Each and every individual in this world is unique and different from others in his/her own way. Each one of us possesses distinct talents and our strengths and weaknesses vary from others. Once you have identified your strengths, take a look at your current role and assess whether or not you are playing to your strengths. If not, assess whether it would be possible for you to adapt the focus of your work to make more of your strengths.”

Grasp your passions

Deep inside, you really know what you want to become. Nobody knows you better than you do and that is why you should keep your passions alive. Do not be discouraged by failures; they are just there to test you mettle. Be steadfast with what you want and that is what you will get.

“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

You have needs, know them

Many people live and die without ever knowing their needs. It is stressing to live a long life and deep inside you do not know what your needs are. If you want security or freedom then these are your foremost needs. Those called heroes and fathers of our nations knew their needs, changed the world and that is why we remember them centuries after they died.

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world” ― Anne Frank

Live from within not without

There are those people who know much about others and the world but they do not know themselves. If you want to be better, start by knowing your inner self. Take time with nature, be alone and go for soul searching.

“At the centre of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.” ― Lao Tzu

You do not have to be the president of the most powerful nation in the world to be better. You can do it in your small ways. Change your life and see what the real value within you is. Try today to know yourself and what is worth your life.

“Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For, indeed, that’s all who ever have” ― Margaret Mead


Love Is A Symbol Of Eternity

Love is a symbol of eternity. It wipes out all sense of time, destroying all memory of a beginning and all fear of an end.                                                                                  

Love is a type of eternal bond in which one tries to bring joy for other at the sacrifice of his own happiness. Love lights the heart of people and stops violence. Love can kill all the miseries of life like pain and sorrow. Love brings peace and happiness in life. Love brings desire to live life. Love is not only between husband and wife but it is the relationship between two individuals who have consideration for each other. It can be between father and child, mother and her son, brother and sister, or between friends.

Husband loves his wife, mother loves her child, and saint loves GOD. Love is the gift that you can give your dear ones. Love is like a precious pearl and the people who understand the meaning of love will never let it fell down.

A person who has not loved anyone is incomplete in himself. If you have never loved anyone, if your life is full of sorrow only love is a weapon by which you can kill all your miseries and bring happiness for yourself and to others also.

You can kill the enmity of your enemies just by saying few words of love. You can kill the quarrel just by love.

“Love… What is love? Love is to love someone for who they are, who they were, and who they will be.” ~ Chris Moore

But above all is the unconditional love which is the complete acceptance of all flaws, selflessness, and steadfast devotion, with no conditions attached.

Let’s examine some possibilities, beginning with parental affection. We might imagine that the idealistic feelings a mother first has for her baby should include unconditional love, meaning that no matter what the child does or says, her love for her child remains unwavering. If her child makes mistakes, she still loves him. Whether rich or poor; fat or thin; successful or struggling; she loves her offspring. Despite disagreements or different beliefs, her love for her child remains unchanging. Unconditionally means just that: No conditions or requirements attached.

So when we find someone who loves us as we are without any condition, and we are able to love them the same way, it is an amazing experience. They may be different from us in many ways. They may view the world differently and have habits that we don’t share, but we can embrace these differences because they are part of this unique person we love.  We will be able to love each other regardless of sickness, mistakes, financial hardship, or any other of life’s inevitable trials and difficulties.

But this kind of love requires an unconditional love of oneself first, so we have the strength of heart and mind to give the same to another human being. . It means that first we have to love ourselves, feel good about ourselves and acknowledge the positive qualities that we can bring to a relationship. If we won’t have that confidence in ourselves as a valuable and capable person, then our insecurities will affect our mutual happiness and our relationship.

Perhaps, while reading this article, you’ve struggled with the concept of unconditional love because you’ve suffered an abusive upbringing, or you were juggled between orphanages, foster care environments, or step-parents’ homes. Perhaps you left an abusive relationship and started a new life in a different country. These circumstances make you special and spiritually strong, but not any less capable of experiencing love.

I’ve seen amazing examples of remarkable souls who’ve experienced horrible abuse, torture, and neglect, only to develop into the most kind and unconditionally loving humans.

I believe in unconditional love. I believe it’s possible to love our children, our spouses, and our fellow human beings–unconditionally. Perhaps the question is not whether we can try or whether it’s possible; perhaps it’s simply a question of putting our love into actions.

“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.” ~ Maya Angelou

 

Positive Thinking

Positive thinking often starts with self-talk. Self-talk is the endless stream of unspoken thoughts that run through our head. These automatic thoughts can be positive or negative. Some of our self-talk comes from logic and reason. Other self-talk may arise from misconceptions that we create because of lack of information.

If the thoughts that run through our head are mostly negative, our outlook on life is more likely pessimistic. If our thoughts are mostly positive, we’re likely an optimist, someone who practices positive thinking.

Positive thinking isn’t about expecting the best happens every time, but accepting that whatever happens is the best for that moment. Positive thinking generates positive feelings and attracts positive life experiences. Have you ever heard this saying, “He who controls his mind, controls his life”. We cannot control what others do or what happens around us, but we can control our own mind. And when we control our mind, we will be in control of our thoughts, our emotions, our beliefs, our attitude, our actions, the word we say, and the images that run around our head.

Now that we understand how powerful our mind could be in relation to the pattern of our thoughts and our outlook on life, why not train our mind to embrace the power of positive thinking and a good result.

It has been argued in medical circles that up to 90% of disease has psychological origins. It’s a fact that our psychological outlook can have a dramatic effect on our overall health and longevity. Positive thinking can be a useful, powerful tool to get through difficult situations that life can bring and it can also be used to help improve the overall quality of one’s life. Having a positive outlook enables us to cope better with stressful situations, which reduces the harmful health effects of stress on our body. Those who believe in the power of positive thinking, such as motivational speakers, life coaches, and self-help gurus, claim that taking an optimistic approach to life has shown great benefits. Some of the benefits that believers of positive thinking claim to experience are more stability during stress, physical and psychological well-being, recovery from illness, and healthier relationships.

The topic of positive thinking has been studied by many people. Here are some of their thoughts. The law of expectations says: “Everything you expect with full will come true.” In other words, we do not necessarily get what we want, but get what we expect. If people develop the habit of positive expectations, they will be amazed at the influence it will have on them and the people around.

The law of gravity says: “You are a living magnet; you always attract people, ideas and circumstances that harmonize with your main ideas“. One of the most important habits in this regard, is a habit to fill the consciousness of a positive picture of your life and the world.

The law of correspondence says: “Your outer world is an accurate reflection of your inner world.” It means that people get what they think most of the time.

The law of attraction says: “I attract to my life whatever I give my attention, energy and focus to, whether positive or negative” this means that whatever comes into our life, we are attracting it into our life by the power of our mind, both positive and negative experiences. It’s attracted to us by the images we’re holding in our mind, because pictures or images are thoughts!

Positive thinking doesn’t mean that we keep our head in the sand and ignore life’s less pleasant situations. Positive thinking just means that we approach unpleasantness in a more positive and productive way. We think the best is going to happen, not the worst.

It is simple to learn of how to change negative thinking into positive thinking. But it needs time and practice, as we are creating a new habit after all. Positive thinking is like exercising a muscle. Only it gives us a mental workout. The more we use it, the better we will become at it.

Here are some tips that we can use to think and behave in a more positive and optimistic way:

  • Identify areas to change. If we want to get more involved in the habit of positive thinking, we have to identify the areas of our life that we usually think more negatively about. Whether it is our work, a relationship or our finances. We can focus on each area one at the time and approach it in a more positive way.
  • Check ourselves. We have to stop, check and evaluate our thoughts regularly during the day. If we realize that our thoughts tend to become negative, we have to find a way to change their direction into a positive way.
  • Be open to humour. It’s okay to back off from the intensity of our life from time to time, and see the humour in life’s situations. We have to learn to laugh more often, especially during hard times.
  • Surround ourselves with positive people. People have a huge impact on our lives. There are people who can suck out our happiness, energy and maybe some of our tangible resources. It is important to be with people who can enrich our lives, and inspire us to be a better person. “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
  • Practice positive self-talk. Most of us usually are in constant mental chatter. We talk to ourselves all day long and, unfortunately, this self talk is frequently negative. Often it is tainted with guilt about our past or anxiety about our future. This negativity can destroy any seed of hope that we may otherwise have in striving for our dreams. We must not say anything to ourselves that we wouldn’t say to anyone else. Be gentle and encouraging with ourselves and use positive affirmation whenever we say something negative, whether in the mind or verbally. Affirmations are positive statements of a desired outcome or goal. They are usually short, believable and focused. By repeating them over and over again, we build inroads into our subconscious mind, opening up the possibility of a new state of thoughts.

“Positive thinking is more than just a state of mind, it is the way we embrace life“


Life’s Obstacles

Life’s obstacles could be perceived as excuse for our failure or the reason behind our success. Part of human nature is a desire to make progress, or positive change. We all want to improve some area of our life. Perhaps we want to improve our finances, relationships, health, or education. We may want to control our emotions, develop self-discipline, or grow more tolerant. But why is progress so slow?

Part of the reason lies in asking the above question. That is, rather than ask what’s holding us back, we shrug our shoulders and sigh, “Well, I guess that’s what is meant to be.” However, what happens to us is not the result of what is meant to be, but the result of the actions we take or fail to take. So, if we find ourselves in less than satisfactory circumstances, let’s start by considering the major obstacles to our success.

And once we have identified them, let’s ask ourselves how we can overcome those hurdles. Finally, after arriving at a solution, let’s act on it.

Thus, a simple 3 Step Plan can launch us on our way:

Identify what is holding us back.

Figure out what steps we need to take to overcome the obstacles.

Take action! Implement our plan.

Major Obstacles that Slow Our Progress

  1. Living by default instead of by design.  

That is, rather than plan our actions, we usually just automatically react to whatever happens to us at the moment. And when we act automatically, we just continue doing what we have always been doing, which is the definition of NOT making progress. The solution is to stay alert, vigilant, and think before we act. Before acting, ask yourself if what you are about to do will improve your life, keep it the same, or make it worse.

  1. Making excuses instead of making plans.

Success is not a matter of luck that happens to us. Rather, it is created by us because of the actions we take. When we accept responsibility for our actions, we empower ourselves, but when we deny our shortcomings and rationalize our poor behaviour, we condemn ourselves to mediocrity or failure. For as Shirley Chisholm wrote, “You don’t make progress by standing on the sidelines, whimpering and complaining. You make progress by implementing ideas.”

  1. We listen to our Inner Child instead of our Inner Adult.

We constantly hear two voices within us. One suggests how we can improve our lives. This is the voice of our True Self, Inner Adult, or Inner Wisdom. Unfortunately, the inspiring words of our Inner Adult are often drowned out by our Inner Child, which is the stored memory of our childhood. Our Inner Child is a “fraidy cat” or scaredy-cat. It is afraid to try anything new or to step out of its comfort zone. When you act without thinking, you usually turn over control of your life to your Inner Child. To succeed in life, we need to listen to our Inner Adult and act courageously.

  1. Fear of being wrong.  

As children, we were afraid of making mistakes, being criticized, denied affection, appearing stupid, breaking the rules, or being punished. For when we were ‘wrong,’ we were made fun of, humiliated, or scolded. Unless we remain vigilant, these childhood fears will carry over and direct our present action. Remind yourself that you are no longer a child and resolve to act courageously.

  1. Fear of our own inner power.

We all know we have vast inner power. We know this by observing the great deeds of others. For we share the same human nature. If others are capable of greatness, so are we. But we are afraid to use our power. Marianne Williamson explains:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” 

Why are we so afraid?  

Here are some reasons:

  • If we acknowledge our power we have to accept responsibility and can no longer make excuses or blame others for our failure.
  • We may be afraid of working hard and prefer to loaf.
  • We may be afraid people will expect too much from us or take advantage of us.
  • Friends may become jealous of our success and abandon us.
  1. Lack of self-reliance. 

 In childhood we learned that we could not take care of ourselves. We relied on mom and dad to provide us with food, shelter, and safety. They told us what we had to do, when we had to go to school or see the doctor, when to go to bed, when to go out and play, and when to study. As a child we came to believe we could not look after ourselves and we had to rely on others. If we do not remain careful, remnants of those early beliefs will remain, and as adults we will continue to search for help outside of ourselves instead of relying on our inner resources.

  1. Chasing after what we want rather than what we need.

For example, satisfying our craving for sweets instead of our need for nutritious food is self-defeating and will sabotage our plans for good health.

  1. Making poor choices.

For instance, students partying instead of studying, young working men purchasing expensive sports cars instead of saving for the future, and families spending more than they earn and going heavily into debt. Wrong choices weaken our stance and make us ill-equipped to handle future emergencies.

  1. Allowing our past to rule our present.

Tom’s parents divorced when he was just three years old and his single mom had to work two jobs just to survive. Tom received very little guidance from his mother because she was away working most of the time. Today, Tom is confused and not very successful. “I can’t help it,” he says, “I never received proper guidance, so I’m all screwed up and don’t know how to succeed.”

Tom is allowing his past to rule his present. It’s true that we cannot change our past, but we can change how we perceive it. Instead of focusing on the lack of guidance he received from his mother, for example, Tom could have focussed on his mother’s self-reliance. Even though Tom’s father wasn’t paying child support, his mother worked hard enough to raise him. He could learn a lot from his mother’s devotion, dedication, and perseverance. Instead of interpreting his past as depressing and discouraging, he could have found it inspirational by learning from his mother that we can survive even in very tough situations. Besides, Tom is no longer a child. What’s to stop him now from going to the library or bookstore to get the guidance he didn’t receive in his youth? If he were to do so, he would be receiving guidance from the top experts, giving him the edge over most of his peers.

  1. The wrong mindset.

It is surprising that many people continue to believe that their suffering is caused by external events, failing to realize that it is their attitude that is the cause of their problems. More than 1,800 years ago Epictetus taught, “Men are disturbed not by things but by the views which they take of them.” Similarly, around the same time, Marcus Aurelius taught, “If you are pained by external things, it is not they that disturb you, but your own judgment of them. And it is in your power to wipe out that judgment now.” Instead of bemoaning your present problems, why not rejoice  which you can do simply by adopting the attitude, or mindset, that no matter what happens to me, I’m going to benefit from it one way or another.

  1. Postponing future success for immediate gratification. 

It’s silly to deny ourselves the exhilaration, satisfaction, and pride of lasting success for temporary pleasure. But our brains are programed to favour pleasure over the ‘pain’ of making an effort to succeed. That’s why procrastination is rampant. But procrastination is the postponement of life. That doesn’t make sense does it? Despite our programing, we can override it by making conscious decisions to make the effort to succeed. After all, the rewards of success far outweigh the ‘rewards’ of partying, TV, playing games, and other diversions.

  1. Not willing to pay the price. 

We don’t seem to mind paying for the tickets of sports events, concerts, and the theatre, so why do we resist paying the price for success? We cannot succeed unless we first recognize that anything worthwhile has a price. So before you begin any endeavour, cheerfully promise yourself that you are willing to pay the price for success. If you’re not willing to put in the time and effort, you’re just wasting time dreaming about success or making half-hearted attempts.

  1. Avoiding problems.

Problems aren’t the problem, but avoiding them is. Why don’t we already have the degree of success we want? Because there are problems, obstacles, and hurdles blocking the way. Isn’t it obvious we have to solve the problems before we can succeed?

  1. Lack of resilience. 

The path to success is not smooth. There are bumps in the road. We are bound to stumble, trip, and, perhaps, fall. Successful men and women are resilient. They know how to get up after each fall and how to maintain a positive attitude, regardless of the difficulty. If you could use more help in developing resiliency, I heartily recommend this book: The Resilience Factor, 7 Keys to Finding Your Inner Strength and Overcoming Life’s Hurdles by Karen Reivich.

  1. Trying to overcome our weaknesses instead of building on our strengths. 

Working on improving yourself is great, but the biggest payoffs flow from our strengths, so keep building on them.

  1. Giving up too early. 

To repeatedly do what doesn’t work is foolish, but it is equally foolish to give up too early. Setbacks are not for sitting back and doing nothing, but for learning. Setbacks are normal, to be expected, and part of life. That’s how we learn what works and what doesn’t, what to do and what to avoid. Remember, temporary setbacks are not permanent failures.

  1. Talking instead of listening. 

We don’t learn anything by telling people what we know; rather, we learn by listening to what they have to say. So, stop talking and start listening. Before you speak WAIT; that is, ask yourself, “Why Am I Talking?” (W.A.I.T.)

  1. Feeling helpless.

If and when you’re feeling helpless, help someone. It will get your mind off your problems, make you realize others are worst off, and make you feel powerful. Remember, it’s impossible to help others without helping yourself.

  1. Mistaking useless action for progress.

Doubtlessly, you understand the importance of progress, for it is what narrows the gap between where we are and where we want to be. But we mustn’t mistake aimless action for progress, for as Alfred A. Montapert wrote, “Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.”

  1. Inaction.

Another reason for the importance of progress is that we are either progressing or regressing. There is no standing still in life. Charles Caleb Colton explains: “He that is good, will infallibly become better, and he that is bad, will as certainly become worse; for vice, virtue and time are three things that never stand still.”

  1. Believing you are a failure.

You are not a failure, but a person experiencing a failure, setback, obstacle, hurdle, or roadblock. Setbacks are temporary and pave the way for comebacks.

  1. Not understanding the nature of life.

Here is what Henry Ford has to say about the subject: “Life is a series of experiences, each one of which makes us bigger, even though sometimes it is hard to realize this. For the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grieves which we endure help us in our marching onward.” (Henry Ford)

Life is full of challenges, obstacles, detours, road blocks, ups and downs, and everybody has setbacks in their life, and everybody falls short of whatever goals they might set for themselves. That’s part of living and coming to terms with who you are as a person.


Enlightenment

Enlightenment is the “quiet acceptance of what is.” I believe the truly enlightened beings are those who refuse to allow themselves to be distressed over things that simply are the way they are. “Wayne Dyer“.

Enlightenment is accepting and understanding of things as they are rather than as they appear.

Acceptance is an act of trust. It is then, when we accept our current circumstances and let go of what is not working in our lives or what we don’t like, that universe will guide us to where we need to be, to a more fulfilled and meaningful life.

Acceptance also helps us to deal better with the challenges and obstacles which come our ways in life. It gives us the strength to overcome the negative emotions and helps us to clear our mind, to receive intuitive messages which lead us to take positive action.

I am sure that you have some brilliant ideas, somewhere in the back of your mind that you can’t wait to test them out. All you need is a bit of positive thinking and you will be able to put them into action. Remember that Positive attitude in whatever you do will make things easier, and even enjoyable.

Here are some tips on positive thinking which can help you:

1: Live your life and be true to yourself. Consider creating an authentic future in a passionate way and enjoy every moment of it.

2: devote yourself to create a life which you can love and be proud of, for yourself and the people you love. A life out of love instead of fear.

3:  Believe and accept that each moment of life is precious and you could never have it back when it is gone. Every time you hit an obstacle while doing a task, instead of getting dishearten, why not give it another try and see if it will work, or find another way to make it work. In the end if you are not happy with the outcome, then decide to use that moment to learn from and make the applicable change.

4: Remain constantly in the state of being grateful. Once you become oriented toward looking for things to be grateful for, you will find that you begin to appreciate simple pleasures and things that you previously took for granted. Gratitude should not be just a reaction to getting what you want, but an all-the-time gratitude, the kind where you notice the little things and where you constantly look for the good even in unpleasant situations. Today, start bringing gratitude to your experiences, instead of waiting for a positive experience in order to feel grateful; in this way, you’ll be on your way toward becoming a master of gratitude.

5: Always keep humour at the leading edge of your thought. Laughing at and with yourself when possible.  Laughing makes everything easier, happier and it is such a healthy exercise. Life has so much more to offer. Think of the people who love you. They are the perfect reason why you should always wear a smile on your face.

6: Believe that you are the creator of your desired destination. Nobody is able to take your enthusiastic future from you except yourself. Design your authentic life and don’t allow anybody to ruin or rule your life. You’re the master of your own life.  So instead of subjecting yourself to exactly what you will be bound for, create your own direction by grabbing the initial step with a positive attitude. As long as there’s still breath in your body, there is no end to how much you can accomplish in a lifetime.

7: Increase your self-confidence and knowledge by observing and learning positive things from people around you. You may come across people with different way of thinking in your life, but don’t let other’s negativity affect your vision or stop you from being the best person you can be.

Instead of subjecting yourself to what you will be doomed for, make your path by taking the first step with a positive attitude. And with achieving positive will you can surely enjoy the power of positive thought and having a happier life.

“Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.” ― Socrates

Happiness

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. “ Mahatma Gandhi ”

The most basic and primary duty for each one of us is to develop into a joyous being. To be satisfied is not the final word aspect of existence. It is life’s fundamental part. If we are not happy, what else can we do with our life? Only when we’re pleased, the door of great different opportunities could open to us.

Anything we do, it is simply our inner quality that we are going to spread.  We cannot do anything of tremendous value for our planet until anything of accurate value occurs within us. Thus, if we want to be connected to the world, the first thing we must do is to transform ourselves right into a happy beings.

It doesn’t matter what we do in our life, whether it is business, studying or giving assistance to someone or some cause , we’re doing it because deep down, it gives us satisfaction. Each activity that every individual executes on this globe rises from a desire. We were not unhappy when we were a child, as joy and happiness is a source which resides within each one of us. So all we have to do, is to go for it and take charge of that joy which is residing in us.

Everything in universe is in order. The sun comes wonderfully well up in the sky.  The flowers flourish beautifully, no stars falls along, and the galaxies are functioning perfectly. Today, the whole cosmos is occurring divinely well, but just a negative thought worming up on our brain enables us to believe that today is a poor day.

Suffering occurs basically when most human beings shed perception in regards of what this life is all about. Our emotional process become far larger than the existential procedure, or our petty creation become far more critical compared to GOD’s Creations, to place it bluntly. This is the way to obtain all suffering. We miss the complete sense of what this means to be alive here. An emotion within us or a thought within our mind establishes the nature of the experience right now. And our thought may have nothing to accomplish even with the restricted reality of our lifestyle. The entire creation is happening beautifully well but just one considered emotion can ruin everything.

Anything we consider as “our mind” isn’t ours basically. It is merely society’s empty talk. Everyone and anyone whom we encounter on a daily basis put some idea or information in our head and we truly have no choice about whose idea we accept or don’t accept. These information are advantageous once we learn HOW TO process them and use them. This accumulation of opinions and information that we collect is simply useful for our survival on the planet. It is not something which is related to who we are.

The first thing we need to do when we get up in the morning, is to smile. At whom? No one. Since just the fact that we have woke up is not a small matter. A lot of thousands of people who slept yesterday evening didn’t wake up today. Isn’t it great that we woke up? Look as you woke up, look around you, if there is someone, smile at them. Because this morning, for numerous people, someone precious to them didn’t get up. Then venture out, take a deep breath and look at the bushes. They didn’t die yesterday either.

You may think this is really funny, but you won’t know its reality until someone dear to you doesn’t wake up. So don’t wait until you understand the value of it. Appreciate what you have, be happy that you are alive and everyone who matters to you is still around.

Of course, people who do not have food or the basic needs for living can feel physically miserable and their needs must be addressed. Our duty as a human being is to help them and take care of such people when we encounter them. But most people are unhappy not as a result of what they don’t have. It is because they compare their life to others. You are driving on a motorbike, you see somebody in a Mercedes and you become unhappy. But for someone who is driving a bicycle, your motorbike seems like a limousine.

Life is about learning and appreciating what GOD has created for us on this plant. It is not about twisting and distorting it. When we rely on the external situation to make us joyful and content, we could never feel true happiness.

The quality of our life doesn’t depend on what car we drive, how much money we have in a bank account, or how big our house is, but how content and happy we feel inside.

It is positively time now that we look inside of ourselves and see HOW TO create personal wellbeing. From our own experience of life we can clearly observe that wellbeing will come to us when we change our perception on life. We need to realize, if we are determined by the outside factors to create our happiness and wellbeing. It will never happens, as nothing will be %100 the way we want them to be. When we accept this fact, then we will be able to work on ourselves as an individual to become the person we want to be. And happiness will be our only choice which has been our authentic nature by creation in the first place.

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” Thich Nhat Hanh

Improving Your Personal Life

Improving your personal life is achieved by turning your wants into needs. Throughout our lives, we all have the desire to be all we can be, although some of us ignore this desire. Many times, we may stay in our comfort zone without realizing that we are passing up opportunities to do something that we truly enjoy. Of course, the money may be good, your bills are paid and you find it easy to work with repetition. Yet, are you happy?

When you are ready to improve your personal life, you must turn your wants into needs. I need to be successful. I need to be a great parent. I need that promotion. I need to save my relationship, etc.

How to be your own life coach:

Many of us spend time convincing ourselves that our dreams will never come true. We may feel that our dreams do not amount to anything. Poor self-esteem hinders the quality of life. In addition, you miss being your own coach. You can turn the negative thoughts into positive reflections, which will guide you to improve overall personal life. The next time you feel like turning yourself into a destructive thinker, breath deep and say, I love myself, just the way I am, with all perfections and imperfections. Learn to walk tall and habitually think about what you want to achieve. Set plans, write down your goals, and take action to reach those goals. You may want to learn something simple. Learn how to be a better cook. Stop yelling at the children.

How to take steps in becoming a better you:

Thinking positive is a great start to improving overall personal life. Surrounding yourself around good influences will encourage you to acquire better behaviours. You will learn to practice these new habits daily. Once you conquer your obstacles, you can mark off the list of poor behaviours you have written down.

Tips for personal development and growth:

Learn to say no. For some of us, our natural instincts lead us in the right direction to helping others. Are you sacrificing your needs however, to consistently take care of other people’s needs? Are you taking time out of each day to pamper yourself for fifteen minutes or so? Are you taking actions to stop persistence that spreads yourself too thin?

If you spread yourself too thin, it will lead to sleepless nights, since you will feel anxious and depressed. Do you constantly keep yourself in the centre of drama? If so, do not allow others to drag you down. Try to stay away from situations that drag you down and take you beyond your control. If you are focusing on the wrong items in life, you are not improving overall personal life.

Do you tell yourself that you are not good enough? Do you say you are not strong? Do you feel like you are not enough? Do you feel like you deserve what you get, when what you get causes you sadness?

For some people it is easy to focus on negativity, which causes them ongoing depression. If you are one of those people at interviews, when asked about your qualities, skills, etc., speaks out rambling off your bad qualities, you need to stop now. What you are doing is taking away your opportunities to achieve. Some of us are lost at words when it comes to speaking highly of ourselves. For some people this seems selfish, or boisterous, yet it is not. Learn to become your own best friend and give yourself frequent compliments. Stop focusing on yourself and criticizing your every move, and forget about the past mistakes and focus on your future. Sure, we can say it is easier said than done; yet if you put forth effort, it is easier than you believe. So many times, we do not take full responsibility of our own actions. We rather live a life blaming others for our mistakes or misfortunes. Do not obsess over past mistakes, live in denial, and stop blaming others to see how your life will improve. We all make bad choices in life. This is a part of living. Learn from your mistakes and move ahead. Treat each new experience as a point of learning. Next, we can learn how to wake up to improving overall personal life.

“Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”  George Bernard Shaw

How To Improve Myself

How to improve myself over the years has become the main method for achieving my goals in life, as some of the biggest things in my life I believe are directly attributable to it.

I believe that sometimes, when all our doubts, fears and insecurities wrap ourselves up, we always come up with the idea of “I wish I was somebody else.”  More often than not, we think and believe that someone or rather, most people are better than us. – When in reality, the fact is, most people are more scared than us.

You spot a totally eye-catching girl sitting by herself at a party, casually sipping on a glass of Asti Spumante. You think to yourself, “She looks so perfectly calm and confident.” But if you could read thru her transparent mind, you would see a bunch of clouds of thoughts and you might just be amazed that she’s thinking “are people talking about why I am seated here alone? Why don’t guys find me attractive? …I don’t like my ankles, they look too skinny… I wish I was as intelligent as my best friend.”

We look at a young business entrepreneur and say “Woo… what else he could ask for?” He stares at himself at the mirror and murmur to himself, “I hate my big eyes… I wonder why my friends won’t talk to me… I hope mom and dad would still work things out.”

Isn’t it funny? We look at other people, envy them for looking so outrageously perfect and wish we could trade places with them, while they look at us and thinks of the same thing. We are insecure of other people who themselves are insecure of us. We suffer from low self-esteem, lack of self-confidence and lose hope in self-improvement because we are enveloped in quiet desperation.

Sometimes, you notice that you have an irritating habit like biting off your finger nails, having a foul mouth, and you – of all people, is the last to know.

I have a friend who never gets tired of talking. And in most conversations, she is the only one who seems to be interested in the things she has to say. So all of our other friends tend to avoid the circles whenever she’s  around, and she doesn’t notices how badly she became socially handicapped – gradually affecting the people in her environment.

One key to self-improvement is to LISTEN and TALK to a trusted friend. Find someone who you find comfort in opening up with even the most gentle topics you want to discuss. Ask questions like “do you think I am ill-mannered?”, “Do I always sound so argumentative?”, “Do I talk too loud?”, “Does my breath smell?”, “Do I ever bore you when were together?”  In this way, the other person will obviously know that you are interested in the process of self-improvement. Lend her your ears for comments and criticisms and don’t give her answers like “Don’t exaggerate! That’s just the way I am!”  Open up your mind and heart as well. And in return, you may want to help your friend with constructive criticism that will also help her improve herself.

One of Whitney Houston’s songs says “Learning to love yourself is the greatest love of all.” True enough. In order to love others, you must love yourself too. Remember, you cannot give what you do not have.

Before telling other people some ways on how to improve themselves, let them see that you yourself is a representation and a product of self-improvement. Self-improvement makes us better people, we then inspire other people, and then the rest of the world will follow.

Stop thinking of yourselves as second-rate beings. Forget the repetitive thought of “If only I was richer… if only I was thinner” and so on.  Accepting your true self is the first step to self-improvement. We need to stop comparing ourselves to others only to find out at the end that we’ve got 10 more reasons to envy them.

We all have our insecurities. Nobody is perfect. We always wish we had better things, better features, better body parts, etc. But life need not to be perfect for people to be happy about themselves. Self-improvement and loving yourself is not a matter of shouting to the whole world that you are perfect and you are the best. It’s the virtue of acceptance and contentment. When we begin to improve ourselves, we then begin to feel contented and happy.

“Make the most of yourself….for that is all there is of you.”   Ralph Waldo Emerson

Self-empowerment through people

Have you come across a person who is so naturally friendly that when you put him inside a room of strangers, he’ll be friends with almost everyone in no time? We call such a people-person, someone unbelievably nice and charismatic that he can charm anyone into doing anything.

A socially-empowered person achieves so much greatness, basically because of the people that catapult him to success. He earns the trust and all-out support of the people, whom he had helped before. He never runs out of help. He can do anything with the plethora of people behind him. All because he knows he maximizes his social potential!

See, if you know your social skills and you make use of them, you will reach self-empowerment. Self-empowerment is making a general overhaul in your life and turning yourself into a happier and more successful person. If you can be one of those people-persons, then I can’t see any reason why you will not succeed. You just have to know how to start.

  1. Be genuine.

Hypocrisy will just bring you all the way down. Be genuinely nice and interested to people. Once they perceive that you are Mr. Hypocrite with selfish intentions, you might as well say goodbye to self-empowerment.

  1. Be the greatest listener that you can be.

To earn the love and trust of the people, listen to their problems and sympathize with them. Do not just hear them out, listen to them with your heart. Make eye contact when the person talks to you. Listen as if every word matters, and it does. Brownie points when they find out that there is a confidante in you.

  1. Laugh out loud.

I do not mean that you force yourself to laugh for every joke cracked by someone, albeit you do not find it funny at all. This means finding humour in things and not being too darn serious. A person oozing with an awesome sense of humour attracts crowds and eventually, attracts success.

  1. Don’t forget yourself.

In the process of fluttering around like a social butterfly, you might forget yourself, allowing everyone to push you over. Remember, love and value yourself before anyone else. If you deem yourself respectable and worthy of affection, people will flock to you and not trample on you.

  1. Do random acts of kindness.

You don’t have to be a John Rockefeller and blow your savings to charity. Little acts of kindness matters the most, and this can be as simple as giving someone a surprise you-take-care card or helping an elderly cross the street. When we were kindergarten students, kindness was taught to us and greatly practiced. Now is the time to revive the good deeds and this time, let them stay for good.

  1. Contact your old friends.

Sad how some friendships are destined to goodbye, but thanks to technology, you can do something about it. Relive the good old days by flipping your yearbook and look for the great people whom you want to communicate with again. Adding these old friends to your roster of support peers will surely make you feel good all over.

  1. Develop your personality.

Are you grouchy, grumpy and generally morose? Whoa, you can’t go through life with those. Get rid of the bad traits and habits that perpetually hamper your growth. And really, who wants a grouchy friend anyway?

  1. Be confident.

Be able to stride to the other corner of the room and introduce yourself to people with that winning smile of yours. Just remember: be confident, not arrogant.

  1. Practice control.

When angry, don’t snap at anyone. Never throw a tantrum. Stay calm and collected. Be adult enough to take control of situation and transform your anger into something more productive and passive. As soon as people think your anger goes to volcanic proportions easily, they will find it hard to come to you.

  1. Keep nurturing your relationships.

Your relationship with your family, friends and significant others is too precious that you must not neglect it whatever happens. Go out and have fun with them. Do things together. Happiness will never fly from your side as long as the people who matter the most are close to you.

In the end, using people for self-empowerment means becoming a better and more lovable person. It’s a win-win situation: the people know they can turn to you anytime and vice versa.

” Our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world…as in being able to remake ourselves. ”   Mahatma Gandhi