10 Tips for Maximum Creativity – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday August 14, 2008

Today’s Affirmation:

“My choices create my world. Each and every day I am creating my world exactly as I want it to be.” (hear it)


“It is better to create than to be learned. Creating is the true essence of life.”

~ Barthold Georg Niebuhr

Taking a break from Olympics posts today. A few weeks ago I was in a meeting and someone presented 10 tips for maximum creativity. I thought these were worthy of sharing on the blog. I’m certain some or all of these will help boost your creativity. They are directed at the workplace, but have relevance to our personal lives as well.

  1. No one is exempt – research shows that anyone with normal intelligence is capable of doing some degree of creative work.
  2. No guilt and give yourself permission to think – let go of the guilt and give yourself permission to sit, to think, to surf. And, give your peers the same permission. Don’t assume someone is not working if they are sitting idle.
  3. Make time for creative thought – find places and make time for uninterrupted and focused creative thought. People produce creative work when they are focused, not when they are scattered and interrupted. And, while time pressure can stifle creativity, research supports that it is not the deadline that stifles; it’s the distractions.
  4. Capture ideas – good ones often come before or after work—in the shower, in your car, before you go to bed, etc. Find ways to remember them without logging on or extending your work day.
  5. Collaborate – the most creative teams are those that have the confidence to share and debate ideas.
  6. Be agile – be patient and allow for several ideas, iterations, and drafts before picking one. The creative process is not “one and done.”
  7. Be tenacious – creativity depends on the capacity to push through uncreative dry spells. Manage your energy and find ways to renew.
  8. Be curious – explore, experiment, find a different venue. Experiment.  Ask others how they do it.
  9. Get out of your comfort zone – stretch yourself. Leonardo da Vinci once said, “You’re brain is much better than you think.”
  10. Be happy – creativity is associated with happiness. In fact, research shows that people are more likely to have a breakthrough idea if they were happy the day before.

Other creativity articles, resources and blogs

Finally, when you don’t know where to start take the advice of composer John Cage and “begin anywhere.”

Stay inspired and creative!

Ray


www.theaffirmationspot.com offers downloadable mp3 affirmations for nearly every area of life – sports, sales, wealth and prosperity, health and fitness – to name just a few. Our library is growing all the time. Remember your fifth affirmation on each order is always free.


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16 Keys to Happiness and Success

Today’s Affirmation:

“I enhance my happiness and success by making smart, positive choices about my life.” 

Here are 16 things you can do right now to drastically enhance your happiness and success.

  1. Eat right
  2. Exercise
  3. Get enough rest
  4. meditate/pray
  5. Be thankful
  6. Be enthusiastic
  7. Think positively
  8. Be patient
  9. Let go of fear and harmful attachments
  10. Engage life fully in this moment
  11. Choose happiness
  12. Accept what is
  13. Keep improving yourself
  14. Make people not things and tasks the priority
  15. Share your life and yourself with others
  16. Never, ever give up.

Remember that your world is created in your mind long before it becomes visible. You are the director of your life.

Be peaceful Be positive!

Ray Davis is the founder of The Affirmation Spot. He’s spent more than 25 years studying personal development and especially writing, recording, and using affirmations to achieve his goals. His eBook – The Power to Be You – offers 416 life-changing and original quotes, ideas, and affirmations to take you to new levels of achievement and reflection.

anunnaki_cover_full_colorAnunnaki Awakening: Revelation, Ray’s first novel,  is turning heads and opening minds. Humanity’s past is checkered, secret, and dangerous.

White House Correspondent Maria Love is on to the story of her life and with the help of an Anunnaki leader seeks to unravel and reveal history’s biggest conspiracy. The Awakening has begun!

25 Miscellaneous Affirmations – The Affirmation Spot for Friday January 25, 2008

First Person and Second Person Affirmations

athlete_hphones.jpgToday I am sharing 25 miscellaneous affirmations. Each follows the first person, second person formula. I’ve written before on the importance of using first and second person affirmations.

Many affirmation gurus suggest that all affirmations be written in the first person. First person affirmations are the most effective when reading, writing, or saying affirmations. Most people do not feel comfortable looking into a mirror and using “you” affirmations.woman_chair_hphones_rs.jpgHowever, audio affirmations open up a whole new realm. Listening is more passive than speaking or reading and you are used to hearing people speak to you in the second person.

My 20 years of experience with audio affirmations demonstrates that second-person affirmations are highly effective as audio affirmations. They offer “outside” confirmation of the first-person version of the affirmation.

For example, following “I am beautiful” with “You are beautiful” provides subconscious external confirmation of the first-person claim.

Tips

  • Commitment – keep in mind that the key to using affirmations – audio, written, or spoken – is commitment to your goal. Without a commitment to making the change or reaching your goal, affirmations are just words.
  • Repetition – repetition is the engine of affirmation success. For an affirmation to do its job in transforming your thoughts, it has to get at least equal time with the negative thoughts you want to replace.
  • How much/how often – speak, write, or listen to the first person affirmation 5-10 times and then repeat the second person affirmation the same number of times.  Do this at least twice each day. Stay with the affirmation(s) for at least 30 days. Use them again if the old thoughts return.
  • How to use first person affirmations – “Own” the first-person version. Speak or listen as if you are speaking passionately to yourself.
  • How to use second person affirmations – “Actively accept” the second person version. Speak or listen as if someone you respect is confirming your affirmation back to you.
  • How to know you’re getting results – there are several criteria for recognizing an affirmation’s success.
    • The old thought, behavior, or performance disappears or lessens.
    • Your mood, thinking, behavior, or performance change in a positive direction.
    • The old thought, behavior, or performance appears and your thinking immediately answers with the affirmation. This is really exciting. Your old thought is “I am stupid.” You think this thought and immediately it is answered by your affirmation, “I am highly intelligent.”

25 New Affirmations

Here are 25 affirmations that will appear on the website in the near future. I tried to cover a number of topics.

  1. Even in adversity, I shine bright as the full moon on a cloudless night. Even in adversity, you shine bright as the full moon on a cloudless night.

  2. I unconditionally love and accept myself in every way. You unconditionally love and accept yourself in every way.
  3. Today I am making peace with food. Today you are making peace with food.

  4. I give myself the freedom to speak and act honestly in every situation. You give yourself the freedom to speak and act honestly in every situation.

  5. I have all the skills, talent, intelligence, and creativity I need to achieve anything. You have all the skills, talent, intelligence, and creativity you need to achieve anything.

  6. Step by step, I am releasing all fear and all anxiety from my life. Step by step, you are releasing all fear and all anxiety from your life.

  7. My life is coming together in a complete and perfect way. Your life is coming together in a complete and perfect way.

  8. Whatever I need always comes my way. Whatever you need always comes your way.

  9. Today I am building a life filled with possibilities more important to me than my fears. Today you are building a life filled with possibilities more important to you than your fears.

  10. Wealth and abundance are flowing to me right now. Wealth and abundance are flowing to you right now.

  11. When I’m on my tennis game, I’m practically unbeatable. When you’re on your tennis game, you’re practically unbeatable.

  12. Today I am sharing my talents with a world thirsty for what I have to offer. Today you are sharing your talents with a world thirsty for what you have to offer.

  13. Today I am molding my business into an unqualified success. Today you are molding your business into an unqualified success.

  14. My heart beats strong and healthy. My lungs are clear and strong. Your heart beats strong and healthy. Your lungs are clear and strong.

  15. I have complete freedom to create my own life and I do so brilliantly each and every day. You have complete freedom to creat your own life and you do so brilliantly each and every day.

  16. Today I am laying it all on the line for the possibility of something more. Today you are laying it all on the line for the possibility of something more.

  17. I am a world-class musician. You are a world-class musician.

  18. I am a great parent and I get better and better each and every day. You are a great parent and you get better and better each and every day.

  19. I am patient in my life. I am accepting in my life. I am patient and accepting in my life. You are patient in your life. You are accepting in your life. You are patient and accepting in your life.

  20. Good things are happening for me. My life is moving in a positive direction. Good things are happening for you. Your life is moving in a positive direction.

  21. I am confident; much more confident than ever before. You are confident; much more confident than ever before.

  22. I am self-reliant. I control my destiny. You are self-reliant. You control your destiny.

  23. I am taking bold action to improve those things I want to change in my life. You are taking bold action to improve those things you want to change in your life.

  24. I have a right to my feelings and beliefs and I allow others the same right. You have a right to your feelings and beliefs and you allow others the same right.

  25. I am a model of peace and tranquility. I remain, in all circumstances, calm, cool, confident, and collected. You are a model of peace and tranquiltiy. You remain, in all circumstances, calm, cool, confident, and collected.

    Follow your bliss! Achieve your bliss! Become your bliss!

    Ray

    Visit The Affirmation Spot Now

    Ray Davis is the Founder of The Affirmation Spot and focuses on empowering minds to think positively, achieve goals, and live dreams. He is author of the ebook The Power to Be You. and the forthcoming The Power to Be You 2.

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Making the Most of Each Day – The Affirmation Spot for Wednesday January 2, 2008

Today’s affirmation is:

“I make each day a unique and special time in my life.”

solar_system2.jpgOur lives are about more than our jobs, our roles, our tasks, and our responsibilities. Each day of our existence has some unique place the tapestry that makes up our lives. If we’re not careful, we may just miss the meaning.

It’s easy for days to slip by in our lives without us taking notice. Giving each day a special meaning is one way to keep that from happening.

Over the years, I’ve used a number of strategies to add meaning to each day. My favorite is to assign a positive attribute to each day of the week. This is not necessarily a novel idea. In the western world, the days of the week are generally named for the known celestial bodies and the god associated with that object. 

In English Sunday is Sun-day. Monday is Moon-day. In French, Mardi (Tuesday) is Mars-day, Mercredi (Wednesday) is Mercury-day, and Jeudi (Thursday) is a translation of the Latin Jovis (Jupiter) or Jupiter-day. Saturday in English, obviously, is Saturn’s Day.

You can do something similar to add meaning to each day of your week. Try associating a positive emotion, attribute, or thought for each day. As the week’s cycle through, you will find that you look forward to focusing on the meaning of each day. The theme for each day becomes your own private meditation for the day.

You can associate anything you want with each day. The goal is to embody or focus on that attribute as you go through the day. The concepts should resonate with you and your life, but here is an example to give you some ideas.

  1. Sunday – theme your Sundays as “rebirth”. Since Sunday is generally viewed as the first day of the week it makes sense to use it to focus on something like rebirth. It is wonderful to have the opportunity start fresh every so often. Once a week is perfect.
  2. Monday – try theming Mondays as “happiness”. Monday is a depressing day for many people because it is the first day of the work week. Try countering the negative connotation by focusing on happiness all day.
  3. Tuesday – try theming Tuesdays as “peace.” Tuesday as the second day of the week.
  4. Wednesday – try theming Wednesdays as “overcoming”. Wednesday is often viewed as the middle of week – “hump day”. Capitalize on that idea by focusing on overcoming obstacles and challenges on Wednesday.
  5. Thursday – try theming Thursday as “faith” or “belief”. You may focus on your religious and spiritual beliefs or belief in your abilities or your future. Giving one day a week to this topic keeps you grounded in what is important to you.
  6. Friday – try theming Friday as “development”. We always need to be moving ahead in our lives. Having one day a week where we focus on our development can help.
  7. Saturday – try theming Saturday as “completion”. Since Saturday is the last day of the week it is ideal for highlighting the idea of finishing tasks or bringing aspects of our life to completion.

Other possible themes include hope, forgivness, relaxation, joy, frugality, learning, or love. The possibilities are endless and limited only by your imagination.

Coincidentally, there are seven days of the week and seven colors in the rainbow. You might alos try associating a color with each day/positive emotion to create additional significance. 

Create calendars (regular or cyclical) that detail your themed days of the week. As the weeks pass, you begin to look forward to your “day of peace” on Sunday or your “day of take it slow” on Saturday. Try writing a more detailed descriptions of what each day means to you and how it contributes to your life.

Be creative and have fun with it. Maybe you make every Monday “laughing day”. You learn to laugh at yourself and others for taking life so seriously.

Most importantly, you will add significance to each grain of sand slipping through your 2008 hour glass. By the end of the year, you may find your life has more meaning.

Happy New Year. Thank you to each and every one of you who reads this blog, downloads affirmations, or takes a moment to write a kind word about what we are trying to accomplish at The Affirmation Spot.

Be peaceful Be prosperous.

Ray 

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8 Ways to Reduce Holiday Stress – The Affirmation Spot for Friday December 7, 2007

Welcome to The Affirmation Spot. If this is your first time to the site, be sure to click one of the subscription options (top left) to be notified each time the blog is updated. Thank you for visiting. If you enjoy what you read here, help us spread the word about The Affirmation Spot.

There are direct links to downloadable mp3 affirmations at The Affirmation Spot.com on the right menu. They are set to music and allow you take positive thoughts with you wherever you go all day.  

There are new affirmations in the Christianity section, the tennis section, and the Personal Empowerment section.

Enjoy today’s post.


Friday greetings,christmas_blue_ornament.jpg

We normally think of red and green as the traditional colors of the Christmas season. In our modern world, we can often add the color blue. Blue as in stressed, depressed, down, or burnt out. Even if Hanukkah is your holiday, you can do without this kind of blue.

Despite its uplifting and inspiring aspects, the holiday season seems to have a way of exasperating  normal stress levels in our lives. The season pushes normally even-keeled people to the brink and chronic stress sufferers to the breaking point.  I could probably write a week’s worth of posts on the things that create that situation, but today’s post focuses on ways to reduce your stress this holiday season. 

 Here are a few ideas for making this holiday season less stressful and more meaningful for you. Believe me, I am working right along with all of you on many of these.

  1. Be aware of your schedule – one way to reduce stress during the holidays is simply to know your schedule. Most of the year events are few and far enough between that we can handle them without a calendar. During the holidays, things can sneak up on you. Last minute events can create stress because they often involve finding a gift, cooking a dish, or both. This is avoided by simply knowing when and where you commitments are and planning for them ahead of time.
  2. Stay within your budget – giving is integral to the meaning of the holiday season. With all the marketing and the genuine impulse to give, spending beyond our means to get that perfect gift or enough gifts for loved ones can seem virtuous. There is nothing virtuous about setting yourself up for the January credit card crunch or December blues knowing that January is coming. Stay within your means and be honest with yourself and others. If you can’t afford to buy things, don’t. Consider giving your time to someone else to help them with a project or using your creative talents to make a gift. Most of your family and friends are not really desperate for more things anyway.
  3. Remember the real meaning of the season – I’m not here to tell you what that meaning ought to be for you. However, most of us agree that this time of the year has a significance that transcends the commercialism that permeates it. Get back in touch with what that meaning is for you and stay focused on it during the holidays. That concept is sure to be more peaceful and less stressful than the go, go, go…shop, shop, shop mentality.
  4. Prioritize your activities – you may not be able to fit every party or every activity into your holiday schedule. Rather than stressing out by trying to make room for every single event, prioritize and select.  Learn to graciously say, “thank you, but no thank you.” You’ll have more time for the most important people and activities.
  5. Focus on people not things – the holidays are a time to spend with people – family, friends, colleagues. The spiritual teacher Ram Dass used to say, “Be here now.” Work on being fully present with the people and enjoying that experience. When you are spending time with others forget about the “to do” list and all the other commitments. Just enjoy being here now.
  6. Be with other people – the holidays are particularly hard when you are down on your luck. Nothing is more stressful than being alone for the holidays. If you are in that position, make an extra effort to find ways to be around people and share the season.  You may not “feel like it” and may not believe you have anything to offer anyone else. If you can push past these two thoughts, you will experience more holiday happiness than you expect.
  7. Make time for you – this one is particularly for those of you always place the needs of others ahead of your own, but it applies to everyone. Make time for yourself during the holidays. Take a day and go shopping by yourself or for yourself. Make sure to schedule some time to read, write, scrapbook, work on the car, or whatever gives you personal joy. The feeling that you haven’t had any time to “just be” can be very strong during the holidays. The effect of that is often stress. Remember to be good to others by being good to yourself.   
  8. Stay on track – use affirmations, prayer, meditation, and other practices and tecniques to stay on track with these other goals. Take a moment each day to see make sure you are monitoring your stress and keeping it under control.

A great affirmation for the holiday season is:

“I am committed to reducing my stress this holiday season. I am reducing stress this holiday season by gaining maximum enjoyment from my time with family and friends. I am reducing stress this holiday season by remembering and focusing on why this time of year is important to me.  I am reducing stress this holiday season by recognizing and addressing my own needs so that I have the energy to be there for others.” 

No offense to Elvis, but you can do without the Blue Christmas this year. Try each of these ideas or just pick one and watch your stress go down and your enjoyment go up. 

Peace…

Ray
The Affirmation Spot

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Big Rocks First – The Affirmation Spot for Saturday December 1, 2007

Today’s Thought:
What is is, but that doesn’t mean it’s what must be.
~ Ray Davis

big_rocks.jpgToday, perhaps, is not my most original post. However, there are certain ideas and concepts that we keep forgetting. An occasional reminder never hurts.

You may be familiar with the Big Rocks analogy. If not, let me briefly recount it. The story has countless derivations. Many authors credit Steven Covey for putting it in his book First Things First.

A college professor instructing a class full of high-powered, driven, MBA candidates decided to make a point to this group of overachievers. He announced to the class, “It’s time for a quiz.”

There was shuffling in the room as the students pulled out pen and paper and prepared themselves to expound on some esoteric principle of macroeconomics. To their surprise, the professor produced a large, wide-mouthed glass jar from behind his desk. As the class looked on, the professor placed a series of fist-sized rocks into the jar until the rocks reached the top of the jar.

“Is the jar full,” he queried the class?

One particularly eager student raised her hand, but could not even wait to be called on. She proclaimed, “Yes, professor, the jar is full.”

“Are you sure,” asked the professor, patiently?

He produced a jar filled with small pebbles and began to pour them into the first jar until they filled all the space between the larger rocks. When he’d finished he asked again, “Is the jar full?”

Skeptical, from being burned the first time, someone said, “Probably not.”

Smiling, the professor pulled out a jar of sand and poured it into the first jar. The sand seeped into the crevices between the pebbles and filled the space. As the sand reached the top, the professor had one of the students come to the front of the room and pat the sand down and smooth it so that it was even with the top of the jar.

“Now is the jar full?”

A few people were now ready to guess again that the jar was full. The professor pulled out a bottle of water and began pouring it into the jar. The water was absorbed by the sand. When he had poured as much water as the jar could hold, the professor asked one more time if the jar was full.

The class sat there, a bit unsure. Finally, the professor confirmed that the jar was now full.

“If we apply this example to our lives,” the professor asked, “what is the lesson?”

One student raised his hand and said, “That if we really, really try we can always fit one more thing into our lives?”

“No,” responded the professor satisfied that they had taken the bait, “The lesson is that if we don’t put the big rocks in first, there won’t be room for them.”

If all goes well, we get about 80 trips around the Sun (plus or minus 10) in this life. The water, the sand, and the pebbles are always going to be there knawing at us, stealing our time away. We have to put the Big Rocks into our 80-year jar first or we may never get to them.

Coaching their sales teams is the Big Rock (in their job) for managers in my company. For most, it was not only the most critical to their success, but the real reason they like being a sales manager. Yet, all the little things were getting in the way because they were not putting the Big Rock into their calendars FIRST.

My wife and I took our first trip to Hawaii this past March. We absolutely fell in the love with the place. We developed a mutually shared dream to live there one day.

hawaii_kauai_hanalei_bay_beach_0055Friends and family don’t think we’re serious, but we are already thinking about and acting on ways to make it happen. We both are afflicted by the sights of the beautiful blue water every time we close our eyes.

Hawaii has become a Big Rock for us. When it came time to decide on a vacation destination for next year there was no discussion. We could have gone somewhere we haven’t been before, but we put our Big Rock into the jar FIRST. We booked another trip to Hawaii.

What are the Big Rocks in your life? Who are the people, which are the experiences, what are the achievements that bring or would bring you the most joy? Are they the FIRST things in your proverbial calendar or are they relegated to the bottom of the pile in the hope that you will get to them someday?

The end of the year is always a great time to reflect and take stock of our direction your life. Think about what your Big Rocks are and make sure they are the priority in 2008.

Peace…

Ray

For more inspiring content, visit The Affirmation Spot website or YouTube channel.