Getting Past Fear to Action – Day 285 of 365 Days to a Better You

There’s an old German proverb that says, “Fear makes the wolf bigger than he is.”

You want to build your side business, change jobs, or go back and get that degree, but something is stopping you. Sure, time, money, the ease of staying put are often the easy culprits. Are they really the reasons you haven’t taken action or is there a conscious or unconscious fear anchoring you in place?

Change is a wolf and our fears about it do make it look bigger than it is. Are you feeling a little fear about the change? It doesn’t mean you’re coward or weak, it just means your human and you’ve allowed the wolf of fear to swallow your dream.

Want to know a secret? Most of the time, that wolf is a shadow puppet on the walls of your mind. It’s only as big as you make it.

Powerhack: Here are some things you can do turn stagnant fear into action when you’re stuck.

  1. Just jump – do you remember, as a kid, the first time you jumped off a diving board? You had that same lump in your throat you have about this. You stared at the water, you counted, and you heard your self-talk talking you out of it. Finally, one of your friends yelled, “Just jump!” That was the solution. You shut down your mind and just acted. Before you knew it, you were hitting the refreshing water and rising back to the surface in joy. That worked out and so will this.
  2. Dream bigger – yeah, this one gets a bad rap because everyone says it, but it’s applicable here. Maybe you don’t have a dream big enough to overcome your fear of acting. Have you ever REALLY wanted something? I mean REALLY? You let nothing stand in your way. If this dream doesn’t have you that passionate, dream a bigger dream.
  3. Find examples – maybe you’re thinking, “Someone my age can’t do that” or “Someone in my situation can’t do that.” Wrong! I simply guarantee you’re wrong. There is someone out there who overcame none than you to get what you want. Find them and let their story inspire you.
  4. Past is prologue– you’ve done this before. At some point in your life, you faced a challenge, thought you couldn’t, but did anyway. Remember those examples and be inspired that you’ve done it before and you can do it again.

See, that wolf isn’t as big as he seems. In the face of your determination, he turns into a lovable pup.

Just in case no one else had reminded you today, you’re AWESOME!

Ray

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Selfish You – Day 269 of 365 Days to a Better You

It’s not always selfish to put yourself first, nor selfless to put others first. Wisdom is knowing when to do which.

From selfless in the last post to selfish today. Not to worry. It’s the good kind of selfish. Here’s my question for you. Are you selfish enough with your time to pursue your goals and dreams?

This is a hard one for many people. Life is demanding. Most of us have to work. We have to sleep, eat, commute, and run errands. We have family, friend, and community commitments. We’re programmed to say yes to things and there’s noting wrong with that except…except when a big dream you have is constantly the 10th down in your to-do list. That’s a deal-breaker.

When you find this happening consistently, you have to get selfish or say goodbye to your dreams. You have to say a word many of us have been conditioned not to say. That word is no. You have to do it even when people you care about don’t understand.

Here’s the thing. Having dreams doesn’t make you unique. Almost everyone has dreams. What makes you rare is that you have a determination to see yours to fruition. Most people sideline their dreams, allowing life to swallow them whole.

It takes strength to stay on course against that tide constantly trying to pull you away from your shore. It takes determination to keep going when everyone around you oozes, “What’s the point?”

I’m not telling you to ice out your friends and family or shirk life’s responsibilities. I am telling you that you that, if you allow it, your dreams will never naturally rise to the top. There’s no perfect moment when this and this and that is done. There’s no time when you’re obligations are going to green light the time you need to pursue your dreams.

You have to take the time, take the heat, and miss some things everyone else is doing. If your dream matters enough, though, it’s the price to be paid for them.

If that price seems too high, you’re not pursuing the right dream. Find your balance and you’ll find your mountaintop.

I wish you nothing but the best until we meet again!

Ray

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If You Keep On Doing What You’re Doing – Day 265 of 365 Days to a Better You

Tough times don’t last, but tough people do.
~Robert H. Schuller

You know the rest of the aphorism, “You’ll keep on getting what you’re getting.” I’m here to tell you today that’s not always true. This quote is often used to inspire people who are not acting on their dreams to make a change and take some action.

You, though? You’ve been working your plan, doing all the right things, and you just haven’t caught your lightening in a bottle yet. You stopped doing what you were doing a long time ago and you’re wondering, “When will I see my results?”

Good for you! Good for you that you had the courage to try something different and keep at it! If you’re doing all the right things, then keep on doing what you’re doing!

All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.
~Walt Disney

Here are a few quick ways to make sure that doing what you’re doing, will eventually get you what you want.

  1. Test your results – you had a plan at the beginning. Is it working? Do you need to tweak it? If so, what do you need to stop doing, do more of, or do less of?
  2. Time – you may be doing all the right things, but you’re not investing the needed time to get the results as quickly as you’d like. Re-evaluate your time commitment.
  3. Learning – to be really good at anything, you have to keep learning. Are you continuing to build your knowledge in your area of focus? When you “burst onto the scene” in your business or niche or reach your personal objective, all the knowledge you’ve accumulated will be worth and useful.
  4. Investment – are you trying to do the whole thing yourself? With a small investment, could you automate or get some expert advice that will speed up the process and allow you to focus on the most important things.
  5. Distractions – we all have distractions in life. What can you do to minimize yours so that they’re not holding you back.
  6. Mindset – maybe the most important thing you can do is master your mindset. The only person committed to making your dream a reality is you. You may be the only person who really believes in this dream until it makes a splash in the world. You’re the only fan and the only detractor at this point. Which one you choose to be will decide how fast your reach your goals.

Yes! I see you. I see striving. I see you working late into the night or early in the morning around your day job. I see you wanting this SO bad. You just keep on doing what you’re doing and just wait and see what you get!

Love you all. Stay true to your vision of you!

Ray

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Tug of War for Your Dreams – Day 257 of 365 Days to a Better You

Do you remember when you were a kid picking teams for a game in gym class? Imagine the game is tug of war. You’ve been selected as one of the captains. It’s 10 kids to a team, but you have 30 kids in your class. The other captain and you each pick your team of 10 and 10 kids are left out.

You line, grab the rope, and begin pulling. After a few seconds, the gym teacher tells two of the kids sitting out to join the other team. With the added help, they begin to pull your team toward defeat, but your team is tough and you manage to regain your footing and hold your ground.

The gym teacher tells two more kids to join the other team. Now, the other team is pulling you more rapidly toward defeat. Finally, the gym teacher has the rest of the kids join the other team. Your team collapses immediately and is dragged helplessly to defeat.

You jump up and scream, “That wasn’t fair!” You would, right? I mean 20 versus 10 is going to end only one way. If you’re the 10, it’s not good for you.

Now I want you to think about your life and your dreams. You are the captain of two tug of war teams – Team Dream and Team Doubt. These teams aren’t made of people. They’re comprised of your thoughts and feelings. They’re locked in an eternal struggle for the outcome of your dreams.

You begin the match with belief, confidence, action, determination, and vision on Team Dream. You start pulling and you’re starting to win, but it’s not happening as fast as you imagined. You start to feel the doubt creeping in and add a couple of new members to Team Doubt – “What if I’m not good enough?” “This is how things always go for me.”

You start to lose ground and you add a couple more members to Team Doubt. “Why can’t I win just this once?” “This isn’t fair.”

This process continues until your doubts drag your dream mercilessly through the mud. You’d like to jump up and scream, “That wasn’t fair,” but you did it to yourself.

This metaphor is a process the teacher Abraham Hicks calls Contrast. You have your thoughts, feelings, and actions aligned for success, but they’re met by an equal or superior force of countering thoughts, feelings, and actions pulling the other way. You wind up failing or at best in a stalemate.

Powerhack: Logic tells you there’s two ways to change the situation. You either have to provide more force behind your positive thoughts and feelings…which is not very efficient considering you probably were already pushing as much as you could. It’s more effective to clear the doubts and negative thoughts and feelings.

Some of the biggest doubts are what I’d term the journalist questions – who, what, where, when, and why, and how. It’s normal to wonder these things, but because you don’t have ready answers they all produce doubt.

You know you want to be a rock star, but you don’t have an answer to all the journalist questions. How do you proceed? STAY GENERAL and AVOID SPECIFICS. I know this sounds counterintuitive to your western-trained mind. Specifics become blockers and doubts. You get caught up in who, what, where, when, why, and how and you lose sight of and energy toward the goal.

Instead, simply hold the vision of the goal, line up the empowering thoughts, feelings, and actions and let God or the Universe handle the details. As you move along with this positive force toward your goal, the people, places, and situations you need will appear. Trust and allow. You don’t have to release every last bit of doubt. That wouldn’t be human. You simply need to give your positive energy the advantage in the tug of war.

As you release the energy of doubt and resistance, it’s like dropping weights from a hot air balloon, you’ll begin to rise. The more resistance you drop, the faster you’ll ascend.

When it comes to the tug of war for your dreams, simply stop putting members on Team Doubt.

Thank you all for reading and for the amazing support you’ve shown this blog this year. I’m grateful that you spend valuable time from your day here.

Ray

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Listen to People Who Have Succeeded #1 – Day 80 of 365 Days to a Better You

Listen to people who have succeeded #1

People who achieve massive success in their own right don’t have it handed to them. They face many of the same doubts and challenges you face. It’s why we can find courage and inspiration in their stories.

Take this young boy growing up in a war-decimated Austria after World War II. He aspired to be a world-champion bodybuilder, a leading man in the movies, and an American citizen. The people around him told him he was crazy. Someone like him could never achieve things like that. That little boy’s name was Arnold Schwarzenegger and all of those dreams – and more – came true for him.

What was his road to success? He outlines his five rules for success in this video. They’re rules that we can all easily apply to what we’re trying to achieve.

  1. Find your vision
  2. Never ever think small
  3. Ignore the naysayers
  4. Work your ass off
  5. Don’t just take, give back

Let’s all commit to be our best and do our best!

Ray

Fear, Failure, and Dreams – Day 39 of 365 Days to a Better You

Fear, Failure, Dreams Lived

The fear of failure is the shortest route to it.
~Ray Davis

Today is the last in this little mini-series about following your dreams. It’s a theme we will revisit before the year is over.

Ellen Johnson once wrote, “If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough.” Many people have been taught to avoid fear and failure. They’d feel embarrassed to try and fail. What would their family and friends think? This is an evil trap that keeps many people in the starting gate when it comes to their true dreams.

A few years ago I read an article about a study where they compared Japanese and American students’ approaches to learning. The writer pointed out that it is not uncommon to see a Japanese student fail numerous times on his or her way to learning something successfully. In Japan, there is no stigma to failing along the road to success. It is an expected and accepted part of the learning process.

In the United States, we attach a tremendous amount of stigma to failing. So much so that American students are generally not willing to go through the process of failing to learn. American students tend to focus their attention on subjects where they can be successful and shy away from subjects where failure might be involved.

So instead of going through the failure to learn the process we often hear our children say things like, “I hate math.” They don’t really mean that they hold a personal grudge against math. What they are saying is, “I would have to fail too many times to get math and I’m not willing to do it.”

I’m not here to say that one nation’s approach to learning is superior. However, this fear of failing extends beyond school and impacts our adult lives as well. Many people have big dreams or goals they would like to accomplish, but, again, they are still not willing feel the sting of failure to get there. Instead, they learn to play it safe just as their children do with the math.

That’s where my little aphorism at the top comes in. When fear failure so much that we are unwilling to try, unwilling to risk learning new things and failing a little; we cannot achieve our goals and dreams. Most this revolves around our stigma of fearing to fail.

Recondition yourself to overcome your fear of failure. In an outstanding article, Olimpio Zapanta offers five steps for overcoming the fear of failure.

  1. Divorce failure from your self-esteem.
  2. Failure is not all bad. It can be a great teacher.
  3. Failure and success are intimately linked – failure is often a prerequisite for success.
  4. Successful people fail constantly. That’s how they succeed.
  5. Everything doesn’t have to be perfect before you go for it.

With these five great steps and little determination, you don’t have to let the fear of failure sidetrack you from your destiny! Remember that “A Success” is what we call someone who had the courage to persist through fears and through the failures.

Just accept it. You’re going to have some fear when you step into new arenas. You’re going fail when you try new things. So what!

Joseph Campbell called out the irony of human striving when he said, “The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.

Refuse to allow your dreams to die on the sword of inaction.

Follow your bliss. Experience your bliss. Become your bliss.

Ray

Here are three fantastic quotes that remind you how important it is to try new things.

 

Dream Building Builds Dreams – Day 38 of 365 Days to a Better You

Dream building builds dreams.

Let’s continue talking about your dreams and how to manifest them more easily.

We talked about living as if you already have your dreams. One of the specific things you can do is go “dream building.”

Go out on the home tour to see and experience the house you dream of living in. Go down to the car dealership and test drive the vehicle you want to own. Taste your dream – smell it, hear it, touch it, see it. The more senses you have involved the more real it is to you.

Plant a vision firmly in the soil of your subconscious mind that one day you will have the object of your desire. You will experience the experience you seek. You will feel the love you want.

Many years ago my wife and I experienced this related to a house. We were renting a tiny house in our small town. We used to walk around the town lake where sat the nicest subdivision in town. I remember one night in particular we were looking at the beautiful houses and saying aloud, “Some day we will live here.”

At that moment, there was no logical reason to believe that we’d be able to afford a house at The Lake. Still, we planted the seed deep in the soil of our minds. We watered it and nourished by driving through the neighborhood occasionally.

We kept getting up each day and doing our thing. We advanced in our jobs and kept on dreaming. About five years later, we decided to buy a house in town. We had no idea we could afford a house at The Lake. We cautiously set up an appointment to go see a house there. It was love at first sight.

We were qualified for the loan, but, in all honesty, the payment was still a stretch for us. No matter, we bought the house and fulfilled our dream to live at The Lake. We loved that house and lived there for 11 years until we moved to Boston four years ago.

Some people might claim that there was no link between that night we dreamed of living there and the day we actually did. I’ve experienced too many similar experiences to dismiss this idea. There’s no doubt that the seed planted eventually became the three of the life dreamed.

Consider:

A dream fed is dream sped.

Feed a dream. Starve a doubt.

You feel like you’re treading water, treading water, treading water, and then one day you realize you’ve slipped right into living your dream. There’s a kind of unconsciousness about the last step that allows you to ease right into a life you only, well, “dreamed” about.

Today, no matter what physical or psychological weather you face in your life; keep treading, keep dreaming, and stay focused. Your dreams can be yours.

Not every dream is attained by strenuous, focused action. Some dreams grow organically in the background as you keep moving one more step forward. As Napoleon Hill wrote decades ago, “Whatever you can conceive and believe, you can achieve.”

The mind’s eye is a powerful lens through which to conceive, believe, and achieve your dreams.

Ray

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