Achieve Success through FEAR

September 9, 2020

Fear is like a warning sign. It alerts us whenever we’re about to travel from the known to the unknown, from safety into danger. It is a by-product of our beliefs—an enforcement tool we utilize whenever we confront a conflict between what we believe about ourselves and the world around us, and the reality we see in front of us. It is like a wall we construct that blocks access to any place, person, or situation that is outside of our self-constructed, limiting comfort zone.

Some fears are reasonable – they keep you safe, like the fear of growling dogs. Not approaching a violent animal can help you to maintain all of your digits. Other fears motivate us. Fear of poverty can push you to seek an education and become productive and prosperous. Both of these fear shields keep you moving smoothly along your life path. They keep you safe and motivate you to succeed.

Some fears, however, are not helpful. They restrict life unnecessarily. They don’t facilitate progress as much as they impede – like glossophobia, the fear of public speaking. Fear of giving presentations to groups could severely limit your career path.

So this can get confusing.

When you feel your stomach twisting into a knot and have a sudden urge to find the nearest bathroom, how do you know if the fear you are experiencing is helpful, even essential to your survival and achievement of your goals? Or if it is limiting your experience, holding you back from enjoying life to its fullest?

First, be aware of the fear and curious about its origin and purpose. How do we do that? Remember why you create your fears—to block you from going where you believe you should not or cannot go—to feel safe and secure within the world of your creation.

Imagine being raised in a small town. You are taught from birth that life outside your village is fraught with danger and that the only safe path would be to find work and a suitable local mate and settle down for a lifetime within the town limits. What imaginary fears might you concoct to keep yourself at home; Fear of crime in the “big city,” fear of people with different colored skin or accents, fear of being discriminated against as an uneducated yokel? It doesn’t matter if your rationalizations are valid or even reasonable. All that matters is that you believe them to justify your limited life experience.

So, the key to living a more happy, fulfilling life is not to eliminate fear – but to eliminate or modify beliefs you identify are holding you back, limiting your experience of life. And, becoming aware of fear helps you to identify those beliefs.

EX: To protect their children, many parents give them the time-honored admonition; “Don’t talk to strangers.” Wise advice for first graders walking to and from school. But when you grow up, get a license, and try selling real estate, not talking with strangers could limit your income.

So how do we eliminate or modify limiting beliefs? That will be the topic of my next blog – teaser!


Outstrip Yesterday by what you do Today

October 6, 2010

“Our business in life is not to get ahead of others, but to get ahead of ourselves – to break our own records, to outstrip our yesterday by our today.”  – Stewart B. Johnson

 When I read this it seemed like an echo from the past – words appropriate to another time and place – weird. And sad. So many people have been beaten down by the length and depth of the recession that optimism has become increasingly difficult.

And therein lies our conundrum: the more we are beaten down, the more difficult it is to draw upon the very resources we need to bring us back up. Oh, we could wait for a serendipitous occurrence to turn life around – a big sale, a new relationship, a sudden, spontaneous improvement in the economy (right). But to do so puts our lives in the hands of chance. You certainly don’t want it in the hands of the government.

If you want your swagger back – NOW; if you want to feel good about life, optimistic, anxious for each day to begin, confident in your ability to achieve, it has to come from within. The question is: how do we reclaim our confidence when reality keeps slapping us in the face? I hate to quote Madison Avenue, but the short answer is: Just Do It!

Wayne Dyer uncovered a clever truth about the old saying “You’ll believe it when you see it.” Turns out that it is true in its original form and when you reverse the meaning, “You’ll see it when you believe it.” The difference is that the original version requires a serendipitous occurrence while the revised version requires only a change in beliefs.

Our power to choose and change our attitude comes from the simple truth taught by Emerson and many others, “You are what you think about all day long.” We don’t need to wait for life to turn around, we can take control, decide what we want and take the actions required to make it so. The key is in the simple quote above: what do you think about? If you focus on past failures, you pull them into your present and forward into the future. To break any destructive cycle, you must replace the old, destructive images with positive thoughts of achievement, prosperity, happiness, confidence, success. If you’re thinking that this is too difficult, stop thinking so much. Just do it, do it now. It might help to remember a time when you did feel powerful and confident. Focus on that time until you “get the feeling,” then hold on to it as much and as long as you can. Practice this every day and miraculous things will happen. Your external reality will evolve in the direction of your intentions, your belief in what you can accomplish, where you are going. Have a good trip.


No PAIN, No GAIN

August 29, 2010

“Wherever you see a successful business, someone
once made a courageous decision.”
-Peter Drucker

 One potential negative consequence of a prolonged economic downturn is a shift toward conservative decision-making. Experiencing loss can make us tentative, less willing to take chances. We tend to avoid risks that may result in additional losses. The problem with this reaction can be found on the walls of just about any weight-lifting gym in America:

No Pain, No Gain.

More elegantly stated:

“We learn wisdom from failure much more than success. We often discover what we will do, by finding out what we will not do.”
Samuel Smiles

If we act only when success is assured, we lose one of our best sources of growth and knowledge – failure. As Henry Ford said:

“One who fears failure limits his activities.
Failure is only the opportunity to more
intelligently begin again.”

Those who turn adversity into success will be those who are willing to accept the possibility of failure and take those actions they believe will lead them to their chosen goals.

“Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortunes; but great minds rise above them.”
Washington Irving

Dare to be GREAT!!!!!!!!


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.


2010 Part Deux

July 7, 2010

 (Resolve)

 Part 1 is in the history books. Time to turn our attention to Part 2.

Congratulations to those of you who had a great first half of the year.

If, on the other hand, you are feeling discouraged and unhappy with your results in Part 1 – hey, that’s why there’s a Part 2.

Remember, it’s never too late to have a good year!!! Are you prepared to take advantage of the opportunity?

At this point, we have two choices:

1. Give up on the year – agree with those who will be talking about how summer is slow: everyone’s on vacation, etc., and then of course the holidays – no one is going to buy during the holidays… or,

2. Resolve to have a Kick- ____ in 2010 Part 2.

 I’m going to pause in my writing for a few minutes to give you the opportunity to make your choice.

 OK, if you chose #2, consider this:

You are unique.

 In the history of the world no one has walked the earth with your unique blend of experience, knowledge, skills, personality, commitment, determination, compassion, heart. You have absolutely everything you need to live the life of your dreams. You don’t need another seminar. You don’t need to hire a coach. You don’t need to psychoanalyze your relationship with your parents. While all of these may be helpful, none of them are the answer.

If you are not living the life you desire, there is only one thing missing: RESOLVE.

 As Tony Robbins says: “ I believe life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life’s greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve. This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent. As simple as this may sound, it is still the common denominator separating those who live their dreams and those who live in regret.”

 There is no secret to success:

Know what you want.

 Know that you will achieve it.

Never give up.

Take right action every day until success comes pounding at your door.


Bathroom Mirror Quote

June 16, 2010

“Every day do something that will inch you closer to a better tomorrow.”
Doug Firebaugh
 

This is one that should be on everyone’s bathroom mirror – a reminder each morning to be true to who you are and who you are becoming. Why waste even one more day on the past. I mean, you were there, right? You did what you chose to do and life unfolded. Try as you might there is not a single thing you can do about it. (Well, unless you have a working time machine, in which case, call me.) 

Think about it. A life focused on the present and future is a life free of guilt (because we haven’t done anything yet to feel guilty about) – it’s a life full of possibilities, an endless feast of fun, fulfillment and prosperity. So, what’s stopping you? Oh, yeah, you haven’t let go of the past yet have you? Or, maybe you have, but you haven’t formed a clear vision of the future? Well, gee, what are you doing this afternoon?

 If you have a couple of hours, here’s what you can do (2 things guaranteed to transform your life.):

 1. Decide to let go of the past. Make a covenant with yourself that every time your mind tries to relive and redo past “mistakes,” say CANCEL! Bring your mind back to the present and focus on what you can do NOW to live a better life and move closer to your goals.

2. Create a clear vision of the life you want. Take a pen and paper and write it down. Sound silly? Why? If you wanted to buy a new car, wouldn’t you think about it all the time, cut out pictures and tape them on your steering wheel, focus on it until you figure out a way to make the purchase. Well, good news, all life is just like that.

You get what you focus on.

Or, as Emerson said:

“You are what you think about all day long.” 

If you get that, you get everything – and I mean everything.


Get out of your HEAD and into the ROOM

May 30, 2010

Just a quick note to remind you to experience more and analyze less.

When you get to the final day of this journey on Earth are you going to look into the eyes of a loved-one and say “Gee, I wish I’d spent more time worrying about all those things that never happened.?” Yeah, I don’t think so.

 Do you want your final epiphany to be regret over how much time you wasted bemoaning past “mistakes” and worrying about future outcomes? Wouldn’t that be tragically fitting. Your final precious moment spent in regret instead of soaking in the world one last time? I’m starting to sound like the Ghost of Christmas Past. So, let’s go with that. Like Scrooge, we all have the capacity to wake up and change our approach to life. Decide right now to spend more time observing and less time thinking. Be curious about the world. See life as it is and appreciate the perfection—even if it isn’t exactly the way your mind thinks it should be. Release the past and the future and enjoy the only time we ever truly have—NOW. So, as Tiny Tim would say…


The University of Adversity

May 5, 2010

“There is no education like adversity.”
Benjamin Disraeli

Well, aren’t we feeling well educated? Talk about making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. But, of course, it is so true. If life always unfolded just as we expect and desire, we would parish the first time we fell off a bike or lost a client. Put another way:

Good fortune and bad are equally necessary to man to fit him to meet the contingencies of this life.
French Proverb

Sorry about the gender bias (the French) – I’m sure this is equally true for non-males.

Adversity is simply life moving in a direction that we did not expect.

It is not necessarily a worse direction, or a better direction, just different than what we had planned. There are two primary responses to adversity each presenting us with an opportunity for growth.

Ask yourself: 1. Is the situation counter-productive to my life plan. Does it inhibit my ability to grow in the direction I have selected, and 2. Is it within my ability to change it? If the answer to both of these questions is yes, then you can create a plan to bring the situation more in line with your goals.

If you cannot change the situation, you are handed the opportunity to learn acceptance. We simply cannot manipulate every aspect of life to match our vision of how the world should be. Attempting to do so will only bring frustration, disappointment and resentment. Learning to let go of our expectations is one of the keys to a happy life.

“God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, Courage to change the things which should be changed, and the Wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.

Reinhold Niebuhr


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.


He that Knows Not is a Pupil

April 7, 2010

“The only path to learning is to know that you don’t know.”   by I don’t know: some spiritual guy. 

OK, but if you know that you don’t know then …you know, so how is that not-knowing? Cause if you know… I’d need Abbott and Costello to work this one out. Spirituality can be complicated. 

What I do know (or not) is that, when communicating with another human, not knowing is critical to understanding.

The challenge arises because we each have a unique interpretation of the world around us, the relationships between this and that. For example, you may think that purple is the new black. I may think that it is satanic and anyone who wears it should be forced to eat garlic ice cream and live in Bakersfield (my apologies if you live in or are from Bakersfield). Or, you may feel that you are complimenting me by saying that I’m looking much better. I may hear “you look like hell most of the time.”

What you say clearly communicates your meaning—as registered by your personal interpretation. Problem is: I don’t hear through your interpretations, I hear through mine. What to do? Two words: Awareness – Patience – Persistence. OK, three words.

Awareness: To communicate effectively you must first be aware of the fact that everyone interprets words through their own unique perception. So, when you hear a statement from another, don’t assume that you understand.

Patience: Take the time to check out your initial understanding. “So when you say you are going to buy a purple dress, are you saying that you worship Satan and wish to move to Bakersfield?” At which point you can correct my misinterpretation and say, “Why no, I don’t.”

Persistence: Question until you understand the speaker’s meaning. “So, if you don’t worship Satan and are not moving to Bakersfield, why do you want to buy a purple dress?” “Because,” you answer, “I read in Cosmo that purple is the new black.”

Ah, now we are communicating.