Take Time to Slow Down – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday February 24, 2009

Today’s Affirmation:

“”I’m a high achiever, but when I need down time I recognize it and I take it!””
(Click the affirmation to add to your mp3 player)

Hey, you’re a human being, not a robot. It’s a wonderful thing to be a super achiever and most days you are. Wisdom, however, dictates that you recognize when enough is enough.

You all remember the story of the tortoise and the hare. It’s a long race and you need to find respite now and again, if you are to complete it successfully. It’s perfectly OK, and really necessary, to transition freely from tortoise to hare and back.

Your dreams are still there. They are not so fickle that they will spoil because you take one day to cool it! The key is to recognize you need it and take it without beating yourself up the whole time. That defeats the purpose.

You can be the hare again tomorrow, but on the days when you need to be the tortoise accept it.

Stay inspired!

Ray

Into Each Life A Little Rain – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday February 19, 2009

Today’s Affirmation:

“Every time I share my dreams with someone else; every time I put them out into the Universe they are closer to coming true.”
(Click the affirmation to add to your mp3 player)

silouette_ocean_horizon.jpgIt is a beautiful day, a day of hope for the future; a day of limitless beginnings. For your life is like a garden, you must plant it and tend it before the harvest comes.

You must nurture the garden of your life as you go; weeding it of old destructive patterns of thought and action. Making sure it receives the love and care necessary for its growth and ultimately its blossoming.

As with any garden, there must come times of sunshine and times of rain. Both must be if the garden is to succeed and flourish. Conventional wisdom claims that joy is easier to find in the proverbial sunshine than in the proverbial rain.

I have found, however, that when I accept the necessity of the rain, stand in it willingly, and understand its nature and purpose; it can be even sweeter than the sunshine.

The sunshine is the provider of life, doing its work over long hours, days, and weeks. Without it, there is no life. The rain, by contrast, is an occasional visitor. It appears in short increments, but is the source of rapid growth. It brings newness to all it touches.

So keep in mind that if today brings a little rain into your life, it’s OK. The sun will return soon enough. It is right behind the clouds. For today, stand strong, give yourself to the rain, and grow grow grow!

Stay inspired!

Ray
http://www.theaffirmationspot.com

2009 Affirmation

“This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”

With Liberty and Justice and Fewer Customers for All

Today’s Affirmation:

“My world is what I make of it and I choose to make it a prosperous place to be.”
(Click the affirmation to hear the mp3 version)

skull_money

There are positives in everything and the current economic and mental environment is no different. However, just as in our individual lives, our collective life must be driven by productive, empowered thoughts followed by committed action if we are to succeed.

Einstein’s famous quote is true here in spades – the level of thinking that got us here will not get us out.

We are in a recession. That’s not a big revelation to the employees who have lost jobs or companies who have seen their stocks tumble in recent months. What is a recession? Well, the technical economic definition is three consecutive quarters of shrinking GDP.

In the old days, recessions use to be called panics. This is probably a more apt term than the sanitized word recession. The word panic indicates human thoughts and human responses to a situation. To be clear, our economy is having a giant panic attack.

Now is the time that the power of our thoughts can be exposed as cause and solution to these issues.

I would argue that recessions are as much psychological as they are economic. I’m not suggesting that some pretty big mistakes (perhaps even corruption) did not occur in our economic structure bring us here. Only that the extent to which we experience the recession has and continues to rely on the thoughts of people and the actions that flow from those thoughts.

Henry Paulson and other leaders since have tossed around words like “recession”, “depression”, and “catastrophe”. We all have images in our minds that correspond to those words and they are not good. So people begin acting in a way that follows the thoughts that have been planted.

Markets didn’t drop 40% in recent months because companies were suddenly worth 40% less than they were before. They dropped because human beings experienced panic and sold, sold, sold.

Credit didn’t dry up because banks (especially after the government bail out) didn’t have funds. They dried up because humans at banks experienced panic that if they loaned money they wouldn’t get it back.

Fewer Customers for All?

The layoffs that are occurring right now are happening because CEOs and CFOs are experiencing panic. They have been taught that they must captain their “ships” to maximum profit at all costs. In a normal situation, that makes perfect sense. The market determines winners and losers and those that don’t succeed retool or go away.

Layoffs happen as a result, but in calm seas those laid off can swim to other “ships”. They can continue to be consumers. All is good.

This environment is different. Corporate leaders must show vision, courage, and thinking beyond the quarterly numbers for their own sake and that of the broader economy.

In the current economic and mental environment, this usually smart business response – cutting labor costs to save – is counterproductive. This is a stormy sea (mentally and financially). As “ships” continue to throw people overboard to save themselves, they forget that all the other “ships” are doing the same thing.

They forget, at their peril, that their own choices magnified across the economy only deepen and worsen the situation – feed the storm and make it stronger. Because while a company sheds employees to save costs, other companies are shedding that company’s customers and potential customers.

This short-sighted approach means fewer customers and potential customers for everyone. It slows possible recovery and deepens the abyss.

When the entire fleet (economy) is experiencing seas like these, enlightened business minds should see that layoffs are not the way to economic survival. They are the way to further collapse.

Corporate leaders need to step up and stop the job carnage now before they decimate their own markets. Will profits drop for a while, if you keep employees? Perhaps. Perhaps not. Employed people make better customers than unemployed people.

What will you tell WALL STREET? Well, I’d say Wall Street isn’t in much of a position to judge anyone right now. Maybe this is an opportunity reverse the business power structure and gain back some ability to make long-term decisions for your company rather than having to “manage by the quarter” for Wall Street analysts.

Minds can and must change.

Working together and with the right mindsets, we can come out of this situation stronger and better. There is much opportunity in all of this. We may see the emergence of new virtual entrepreneurism that makes corporate structures obsolete. This all could be transformation as much as recession.

Regardless, it is our thoughts created this circumstance and they will lead us out of it. The question is how long will it take us to get it?

Stay inspired!

Ray

Letting Go Strategies

woman_eyes_closed_sun_rs.jpgToday’s Affirmation:

“I hold on to those ideas, things, and circumstances that serve my growth and freely release those that no longer do.”

Letting go is something many people have a difficult time doing. As human beings, it is natural that we grow attached to the ideas, things, and circumstances that have added value to our lives. We get used to the way things are and, at times, will go to any extent to keep them that way. This is simply loyalty until it becomes destructive to our well-being.

The ability to let go and move on is a key factor for success in life. Successful people recognize when a situation has yielded all the benefit possible (or enough punishment) and they willingly accept the next challenge.

Many situations begin in our lives as fertile rivers that nourish us and help us grow. However, when we hold on longer than we should we wake up one morning laying in a proverbial dry river bed and wondering what in the world happened.

Now, I’m not advocating a bottom-line cost-benefit approach to life, where you dump your spouse because you “don’t feel it” today or change jobs every six months. Commitment is an important characteristic of successful people as well.

I’m advocating a wise, well-considered approach that honestly aligns with your deepest needs and intentions. Those are not fickle, flavor-of-the-day feelings, but they do change periodically.

One stumbling block encountered when trying to let something go is the fact that it is a mostly mental process. One way to put an exclamation point on the release is to do something physical to represent the release.

Not every situation needs this much attention, but situations where you are really having a hard time letting go; try the following.

Write the situation you are trying to release on a piece of paper. Be specific. Use names, dates, and descriptions. At the end of the note, write, “Today I am releasing you.”

Here are three ways to solidify your release of the issue.

1. Take your note and tear it into small pieces. Feed the pieces – one at at time -into a fire until it is gone. As you feed each piece into the fire, say to yourself, “I release you.”

2. Get a balloon and stuff your note inside. Fill the balloon with helium and release it. As the balloon sails up and away, say to yourself, “I release you.” The balloon gets smaller and smaller until it is gone. Visualize your attachment to the situation getting smaller and smaller until it is gone.

3. If there are very strong feelings associated with the situation, try this technique. Put your note in an empty aluminum can. Set the can in your drive way and roll over it with your car until it smashed flat. Each time you roll over the can say to yourself, “I’m done with this situation.” When you have crushed the can flat throw it a way and “be done with it.”

These techniques are helpful for situations involving strong emotional attachments. Not every situation requires such an extreme measure, but we do need to maintenance our lives occasionally to make sure we are surrounding ourselves with the people, things, and circumstances that benefit us and the people we care about.

Have an exceptional Monday.

Peace…

Ray

Are You Pole-Vaulting in Quick Sand?

Today’s Affirmation:

“I succeed by helping my clients succeed.”
(Click the affirmation to hear the mp3 version)

pole_vault1The image is rather humorous to imagine, isn’t it? Picture a pole-vaulter racing down the track and planting his pole in a vat of quick sand to launch. What do you think would happen?

Yet many of us do that every day. Our careers, businesses, and personal lives are a lot like a pole-vaulting competition. As we progress, someone keeps moving the bar higher each time. Have we set a firm foundation for success?

The pole represents the actions we take to “vault” over our goals. Our thoughts are the foundation we use to launch. If our thoughts are like quick sand – not empowering and supportive of our goals – then no amount of action is going to get us where we want to go. We have to have a solid foundation from which to launch our activity.

Unfortunately, establishing and maintaining success-generating thoughts is not a “once and done” proposition.

Henry David Thoreau once wrote:

“As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.”

Here are some simple steps to help you create a firm mental foundation for your actions.

  • Add Thinking Time – Many people forget to account for time to think, imagine, and dream. When you start a new project or create an action or business plan add “thinking time” into your time line as the first step. Thinking before you act creates a firm foundation for success.
  • Empower Your Thinking – Now that you’ve added thinking time focus on creating the kinds of thoughts that support your plans, goals, and dreams. Elevate your strengths and abilities and reduce focus on negatives and naysayers. Harness the power of your thinking to propel you forward rather than hold you back.
  • Rinse and Repeat – Keep the positive, empowered thoughts coming. As you move forward, you may encounter doubts or headwinds.  Your thoughts are a critical buffer to keep you going. Many, many people give up as soon as the obstacles appear because their thoughts have not prepared them to handle it. Stay focused on your mental game to keep your edge and weather storms.
  • Grow and Change – Even power thoughts can be misdirected. The point is not to beat your head against an unmovable wall. That is stubbornness not success. An empowered thinker is constantly reevaluating and adjusting course to keep steering towards the goal. Sometimes the goal even changes through the process. Be adaptable and ready transition your thoughts to support the new goal.

Particularly in the current environment, your thoughts are your life-line to keep you going. Make sure they are rock solid and not quick sand. The bottom line is that the first step to any achievement is an empowered thought. The secret to sustained success is constant maintenance of your thinking.

Make getting your thoughts empowered, aligned, and on board the first step in every action plan or business plan you create. Don’t try to pole-vault in quick sand.

Think It! Believe It! Do It! Be It!

Stay inspired!

Ray

2009 Affirmation

“This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”