When all is failing, be optimistic!

August 24, 2010

Quote of the Week

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement.
Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.
–Helen Keller

 So, here is the million dollar question: How can you feel optimistic when you just lost 2 escrows and the one remaining is a short sale you’ve been nursing for 8 months? How can you feel confident when nothing seems to be working for you? (I know that was two questions) 

The answer is simple. Your level of optimism cannot be contingent upon how well “things are going.” Self-confidence cannot be contingent on whether you are currently successful. Huh? Yes, that is what I meant to say. Allowing your feelings to be contingent on past and present results is my definition of VICTIMHOOD. 

You have no control over your feelings when you allow them to be shaped by past or current results. They become like corks bouncing on the waves, controlled by the winds and the currents.  Is this how you want to live? Of course not. 

So, how do you break the relationship between what you see and what you believe? The same way you master anything—the same way you get to Carnegie Hall—practice, practice, practice. Detach your feelings from current events. Focus on your vision of the future. Visualize yourself as a happy, healthy, successful person and allow that image to mold your feelings. Yes you will feel better, but more than that—your positive, optimistic attitude will attract people into your life who can help you to succeed.

When you radiate self-confidence, others feel confident in your abilities.

Time Traveler Alert

April 22, 2010

Time Traveler Alert

This is a message from the Emergency Success Network

 Recently we’ve been experiencing a dangerous increase in the number of thought-forms in both the past and the future. These traveling units of consciousness have created a drop in the critical mass necessary to sustain a positive, successful environment in the Present. We are asking all citizens to please return to the Present as quickly as possible. And, for goodness sake, smile or something. Thank You.

 Lack of Presence is a pandemic condition threatening the health of our planet. And, if we don’t turn the tide now, I’m afraid it could elevate to habit – and we all know how hard it can be to break habits. Due to the prolonged recession, fear of financial hardship has become the focus of news stations, the Ethernet, water cooler discussions and private moments of contemplation. The results of this phenomenon were easily predictable:

 1.  More time spent second-guessing the past and worrying about the future dramatically reduces the number of moments we spend in the only time-zone in which we can facilitate positive change – NOW!

 2.  Upon returning to the present from a worry session our self-esteem and general attitudes SUCK!

 3. Emerson said, we “are what we think about all day long.” When we focus on past problems we bring them into our present and push them out into our future – perpetuating the negative experience.

 The solution is simple: STOP DOING THAT!

1. Become aware of those moments when your consciousness slips from the present. When you notice yourself analyzing past “failures” or worrying about future outcomes, stop! Give yourself a signal like CANCEL THAT!

 2. Take a quick moment to bring yourself into the present. Feel the chair against your body. Take a deep breath. Smell, see, taste – take in everything around you. Get out of your head and into the world.

 Yesterday is as lost to us as the Peloponnesian War. Let it go or recreate it – our choice.

Simply Listen

September 13, 2008

Quote of the Week


“Listening is such a simple act. It requires us to be present, and that takes practice, but we don’t have to do anything else. We don’t have to advise, or coach, or sound wise. We just have to be willing to sit there and listen.”                                                              Margaret J. Wheatley


If, as you read this quote, you experience relief, feel a weight being lifted from your shoulders, or even sense a glimmer of hope that the pressure to  solve the world’s problems could possibly disappear, this lesson is for you.


It is a nearly universal belief that when someone shares a problem or concern they are asking for help, seeking our wisdom, expecting a solution. This is especially true for us men. It seems that we are born with the fix-it gene (apparently located on the Y chromosome). There is no problem too small or large that we won’t attempt to solve. You ladies may not be aware of it, but we even have a slogan, “Have answers; will blurt them out.” I know it can be infuriating at times, but have pity, that’s just the way we’re wired.


I was fortunate that, in the early days of our relationship, my wife, Cheryl, was willing to take the time and effort to point out that my clever and insightful opinions were not always being requested or appreciated. That was hard to understand at first. Why would she tell me about a problem if not seeking my assistance? What possible benefit could be derived by having me just sit and listen? Wouldn’t an empty chair serve the same purpose?


What I discovered after repeated reminders was that being heard is a rare and powerful gift. As I experienced being listened to, I learned that most of the anxiety I experience around problems is released by the simple act of being heard. Once this magical gift is received, we are able to think more clearly, consider our options and solve our own problems. We feel nourished, worthy, even loved when another person cares enough to sit quietly as we pour out our doubts and fears; we feel respected when they trust our ability to discover our own solutions. 


As difficult as it may seem, the next time someone shares a problem or concern with you, sit quietly and listen intently. When they are finished, let them know that you hear and understand, ask questions if you need clarification, then be silent. If they are seeking your advice, allow them to ask for it. If not, don’t offer. Then notice the change in their state. Has their anger or anxiety abated, do they seem more relaxed, relieved? If so, this is their gift to you. Enjoy it.