I just can’t believe how quickly the summer is passing! Here are some quotes I am pondering this week:

“Begin immediately to think of and feel yourself successful.” – – Max Steingart

“What we ponder and what we think about sets the course for our life. Any day we wish, we can discipline ourselves to change it all.” – – Jim Rohn

“It is our duty as men and women to proceed as though the limits to our abilities do not exist.” – – Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

And finally

“Let your heart out of its cage. Release your heart to dream about an unimaginable future.” – – John DiLemme (Quote #30)

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React or Respond?

July 18, 2010

So many times, when something struck me emotionally, I allowed myself to react based on that emotion. That reaction frequently led me in directions that I had no intention of going. The impulse of the moment had a result that I never anticipated. Whether for good or bad, I was not prepared…

Preparation, I have discovered, is essential. Preparation makes it possible for one to respond, to speak or act with intention, instead of reacting. While it is not possible to plan for every contingency, it is possible for one’s mind to be prepared to respond appropriately, even in unexpected situations. It prevents a reaction that takes one in a direction that is not in harmony with one’s values, ideals or desires.

What kind of preparation is this? For me, it is immersion in self-improvement. Personal development (or self-improvement) materials help each of us find our purpose, our “Why”, and the steps we need to take to achieve that purpose. Immersion allows us to replace the negative self-talk, the depressing media chatter, with positive, uplifting information. It helps us reshape our views of ourselves and our world, and gives us the strength of mind to think instead of react to upsetting situations, hurtful words, or poisonous people. “You must immerse yourself in as much self-development information as possible in order to build a rock solid belief structure.” – -John DiLemme

Self-improvement is helping me to acquire the confidence I need to help me take a moment to stop and think. This prevents a knee-jerk reaction that results in my saying something I didn’t mean, engaging in a pointless exercise, or committing to an action I either don’t want or am not equipped to take.

Immersion is defined as “to be submerged”, or “to engage wholly or deeply”. Books, CD’s and DVD’s allow us to choose alternatives to offensive music, depressing news, or shallow, demeaning movies. Between these materials, and finding groups of like-minded people who share the values and are going the same direction, we can create the atmosphere we need to keep us focused on achieving our goals, and provide support for when we feel ourselves getting discouraged or falling short. Self-improvement gives us the tools we need to be prepared to take that pause and think when confronted with an unexpected situation, so that we can respond appropriately. “Preparation may not guarantee a win, but it sure puts you in position for one.” – -John Maxwell

It’s important to remember that this is a process, and takes time. I still find myself reacting more often than I would like, and still find myself going the wrong way because of that knee-jerk reaction. The difference is that, now, it takes me less time to find my way back to the direction I want to go, towards my ultimate purpose. It helps me to spend less time being frustrated and unhappy in situations I did not intend to happen. “If we are not moving toward our God-given destiny, tension and dissatisfaction will always exist in our innter being.” – -Joel Osteen

Keep the Faith, Baby

July 14, 2010

Do you remember that catch phrase? It was very popular during another tumultuous time in our history. I think it’s just as relevant today. Faith is defined as “a confident belief in the truth, value or trustworthiness of a person, idea or thing.” One area that I am working on is faith in myself. We spend so much time focused outwardly, looking for ideas, causes, movements to believe in. We get excited and involved; then, over time, so often disenchantment sets in, and we look for the next one. I don’t think we spend enough time looking inside ourselves, learning to discover what we truly want and need, and developing trust in our own value and worthiness. We don’t cultivate faith in our dreams. We put ourselves down so often, in the guise of modesty, that we have come to believe that we aren’t worthy. How often have you heard someone say, “This old thing?” or “It was nothing. Anyone could have done it.” or other self-denigrating phrases in return for a compliment? There is a difference between arrogance or conceit, and recognizing our own value. We need to develop faith (trust and belief) in ourselves and our dreams. Once we have that, then I think we’ll be able to look outside of ourselves with confidence, and find that cause that we can truly embrace with full faith and confidence that lasts. 

 “Believe in yourself!  Have faith in your abilities!  Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers, you cannot be successful or happy.” – – Norman Vincent Peale

Just for the weekend…

July 10, 2010

Here are a few thoughts for the weekend:

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last.  Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily.”
— Zig Ziglar

“Things happen along the way in our path. Instead of looking at it as a wall that’s being put up in front of us, look at it as an opportunity to scale new heights and to climb that wall — to see and do things you didn’t think you were capable of.” — Robin Roberts

Here’s another one:

“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”
— Les Brown

And finally,

“Every failure is a stepping stone to success.” — John DiLemme (Quote #177)

Enjoy!

Attitude Is Everything

July 5, 2010

“It’s how you react to events, not the events
themselves, that determines your attitude.
Any challenge facing you is not as important
as your attitude towards it, for that will
determine your success or failure.” Max Steingart

We hear every day about the importance of a positive attitude. For me, however, this is something of a challenge. Maybe it is for you, too? We all have a close friend or family member who wants to make sure we keep our feet on the ground. We all have that negative self-talk to beat ourselves up when we make a mistake or have a set back. Some days are easier than others, too-things just seem to flow. Other days….., well, maybe the less said the better! It’s important to realize that our attitudes come down to a choice. I can look for the positive, even if it’s trying to figure out the lesson I’ve learned from experiencing a failure. I can choose to be happy, to believe in myself, in spite of those negative voices in my head. The alternative is to choose the sink into the mire of negative thinking, believing that I can’t achieve my goals, can’t be successful. Somehow, although it may be easier, the negative option is just not the route I want to go. As Jim Rohn said,
“We created our circumstances by our past choices. We have both the ability and the responsibility to make better choices  beginning today.” Every day, I have the option to choose a positive outlook, to believe in myself. Can you imagine what life would be like that if we each made that choice every day? What an amazing place the world would be!