“When failure becomes your teacher, success becomes your future.”
~ Ray Davis
Have you ever noticed the power that words have to transform people and situations? Years ago I was teasing someone at work by saying “absolutely” to every thing she said. For some reason, it put me in the habit of saying “absolutely” to things in life.
When someone would ask me a question, rather than saying yes or sure, I got in the habit of responding, “absolutely”! I became aware that my own sense of resoluteness and confidence was buoyed by saying the word. I also noticed that other people seemed to respond well to someone saying, “absolutely”.
People would comment that someone saying that word so enthusiatically was refreshing and inspiring. So, I kept doing it. Today I answer absolutely practically and metaphorically in life. I’ve found the word has a power and surety about it that people seem to want to experience.
So, here is my challenge to you. When someone asks you to do something tomorrow say enthusiastically, “absolutely”! Amid the gray, unenthusiastic responses they experience all day, your “absolutely” will stand out.
Today’s Affirmation: Today my expectations are high and my experience rises to meet those expectations.
I think it is so important for people to understand that the transformative power of positive thinking and positive emotions are more than just anecdotal experiences had by a few of us. Many in the scientific and psychological communities are working very hard to put scientific and analytical evidence behind these experiences.
While I understand that for some of my readers who have had these powerful experiences, no scientific proof is needed to validate your experiences. There are many people in this world who have trained or are by nature trusting only of empirical data.
Some of you will remember the great Leo Buscaglia and some may ask who? Dr. Leo Buscaglia was a motivational speaker before everyone was a motivational speaker. This long-time special education professor at USC was famous for his passionate belief in love and the potential of human beings.
Today I am sharing the final two parts of a 10-part video posted on YouTube of Dr. Buscaglia speaking in Wisconsin some time during the 1980s. The speech was called Love: The Ultimate Affirmation. The video is dated, but the message is as fresh and needed as this morning’s headlines.
Love: The Ultimate Affirmation Part 9 of 10
Love: The Ultimate Affirmation Part 10 of 10
“2010 is OUR year! This is the year we break free! This is the year we break through! This is the year we break out!”
Many people who follow me on Twitter or elsewhere on the Internet have come to know me for my positive affirmations and motivational thoughts that I post regularly throughout the day. What they do not know is that my life was once far from a bed of roses. I hit absolute rock bottom at the age of 25 and very nearly left this world way too early.
Much of my situation was self-imposed and based on some really wrong-headed thinking about life in general and my life in particular. I know all too well and all too personally how difficult life can get. I also know – from my experience – how critical it is that we master our thoughts and tilt them in a positive direction. That is why it has become my life mission to spread that message to everyone I can.
Today I am sharing a video from a song that came out at that moment in my journey. I consider this song to be one of the great motivational anthems in modern music. “Hold On” was released in 1990 by the singing trio Wilson Phillips. For me, this song came along right at this moment when I was facing my life or death situation and climbing my way back from the edge.
This song spoke to me as I was just “holding on for one more day” and hoping things “will go your way”. That’s where I was and the best I could think each day at that time.
This song – even 19 years later – still speaks to me. It’s popularity at the time and since indicates it has spoken to many others as well.
What a message of hope for a brand new week! This is a live version from the MTV awards that year.
“This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”
“It is what it is.” Has anyone else noticed the sudden popularity of this phrase? Perhaps in this era of big fears we feel swept along by forces we cannot control. It’s become almost mantric for some people.
On the surface, this statement seems to be highly pragmatic and even a little bit wise. But, I wonder.
I’ve been paying special attention to when people use this phrase. They tend to use it in situations where they feel they have no control and have resigned themselves to an outcome. There is a subtext, “I’m powerless to change the situation,” but what comes out is, “It is what it is.”
Certainly there are things in life – despite our positive thoughts and motivated action – that we cannot change. I cannot make Monday Friday. I cannot become 10 again. However, we cannot allow the times, our circumstances, or other people to convince us that the realm of things over which we lack control is large.
“It is what it is” is actually an affirmation – even a meditation – on our powerlessness. If we choose to buy into that mindset and inhabit that space, that is what will expand in our lives. Everything will become only what it is instead of what it can be. We will see ourselves as helpless entities acted on by massive forces rather than as the amazing and powerful beings that we are.
Words have enormous power. Choose the ones you say to yourself and to others wisely.
“This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”
Doubt may be my constant companion, but it will NEVER be my master.
When discussing a word it always helps to understand its origin. The word doubt comes from the Old French douter from the Latin dubitare – which means “to hesitate, waiver”. A concept of fear was attached to the word’s meaning in its Old French incarnation and that meaning made its way into the English definition. (Online Etymology Dictionary)
A modern definition is: “to be uncertain, consider questionable or unlikely, hesitate to believe, to distrust, to fear or be apprehensive about.”
The fact is that we live in a world full of uncertainty. Some doubt is normal and natural. The trouble comes when doubt paralyzes; when you take up residence in a constant state of doubt. When that happens you find it hard to move on to acceptance or trust.
Doubt has long been recognized as an obstacle to growth or progress. Buddha named doubt one of the Five Hindrances that prevent enlightenment. Modern psychotherapy has developed cognitive and behavioral approaches to dealing with doubt. Many motivational speakers and teachers encourage us to find ways to overcome doubt.
Doubt has also occasionally been a stepping stone to deeper understanding such as in the case of the Christian Apostle Thomas. He required rational proof of Jesus’ post-Crucifixion appearances and even had to see the holes in Jesus’ hands to believe. Some rationalists extol doubt as a necessary part of weighing evidence and coming to a rational conclusion based upon it.
So, given these differing views of doubt, how can you come to terms with it and use it? I’m not sure it’s healthy or productive to try to remove doubt from your life. It is a natural part of being human. What you can do is make peace with it and use to your advantage.
My answer is to let a focused doubt run wild in your life! Doubt your weaknesses, doubt your fears, doubt your doubts. Just never doubt yourself.
Doubt is not the challenge. The challenge is what you choose to focus your doubt on. The tendency is to doubt the good things about yourself or your circumstances and believe the “realistic” or negative aspects. Turn that on its head by using “the power of doubt” to eat away at your obstacles and challenges rather than your dreams and your belief.
Why fight this natural human tendency when by directing it appropriately you can use it as a tool to improve your circumstances? So become a doubter of every negative, disempowering thought you think and watch your positives grow.
“I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”