Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Life seems to become more stressful with each passing year. The impact of stress can pose serious challenges to your health and happiness. Much of our stress is the result of habits that have a negative impact on our lives. We create our own stress and become less capable of dealing with it effectively.

Habits save time and are similar to the autopilot feature found in commercial aircrafts. By relying on our habits, we free up our mind for other tasks. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

While it’s easy to see how diet and exercise habits can influence our waistline, it’s a little more challenging to accept the idea that our habits can either create stress and misery, or promote relaxation and harmony.

But habits can do exactly that.

The Negative Impact of Stress on Your Life

There are two types of stress: eustress and distress

Eustress is good, positive stress. Working toward goals or taking a vacation can be stressful, but in a positive way.

However, when most of us talk about stress, we’re referring to distress.

Consider the negative impact stress can have on your health:

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

1. Stress can lead to weight gain. Studies have shown that higher levels of stress frequently reduce the desire to exercise. Stress also has a negative effect on the ability or desire to make healthy food choices.

> Excess weight is dangerous, especially considering that it can lead to a variety of serious medical conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and sudden death.

> If you’re struggling with your weight, consider the amount of stress in your life.

2. Stress can disrupt your sleep. If you’ve ever noticed what a lack of sleep can do to your mood, it’s easy to imagine what it does to your body. When you’re stressed, it can be difficult to fall and stay asleep. Your body and mind need the restoration provided by sufficient sleep.

3. Stress increases the likelihood of serious illness. High levels of stress have been shown to result in a higher prevalence of serious illnesses. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Societies and professions with high levels of stress tend to experience the poorest health.

4. Stress has a negative impact on your immune system. Physical and emotional stressors have a detrimental effect on immune system function. This not only makes you more susceptible to catching a cold or other mild illnesses, but it also increases the risk of cancer. Your immune system plays a vital role in the destruction of cancerous cells.

Stress is a powerful force that has an undesirable impact on your physical health. Decreasing the amount of stress in your life greatly enhances your overall health and chances for longevity. Creating positive habits can help to minimize stress.

Stress also influences your happiness and sense of well-being:

1. Stress can negatively affect your mood. Stress is believed to be a leading cause of depression. We’ve all had that feeling of being trapped and miserable during times of excessive or chronic stress. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> It’s difficult to have a positive outlook toward the future if stress is a big part of your life.

2. Stress can negatively affect your relationships. Whether it arises from money, parenting, work, family issues, or other personal situations, stress can make relationships much more difficult to manage.

Stress and happiness rarely go together. Reducing your stress will likely lead to greater peace, harmony, and happiness.

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

How Positive Habits Can Reduce Stress

Our lives are largely the result of our habits. It’s easy to see the impact that habits, both positive and negative, have on our lives. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Brushing your teeth each day has a profound impact on the condition of your teeth. Missing a day here and there has little impact, but brushing on a regular basis has a very positive outcome.

Failing to brush your teeth regularly has a very negative effect, and brushing your teeth occasionally doesn’t help much. Your dentist will unlikely be able to tell whether you brushed your teeth 10 times or 0 times over the last 6 months. It’s the habit of brushing that provides positive results.

Similarly, there are many habits that can reduce your stress and promote the harmony we all crave. Again, these habits won’t accomplish much if only used sparingly. It’s important to make a daily habit of them.

Remember that stress is something you often do to yourself. Being yelled at by your boss isn’t necessarily stressful. It’s your resulting thoughts that create stress. Some examples might include: Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Does this mean I’m going to get fired? How will my family survive?

> I’ll never get a promotion. I’ll be stuck in this job forever.

> I really need that raise. Now it won’t happen.

> My boss hates me. I hate my job. How did I end up here?

Can you see how more positive mental habits could result in less stress? Although these mental habits might be deeply ingrained, they can be altered for the better.

Habits That Make Life Easier and More Pleasant

There are certain habits that help minimize stress and promote harmony. Creating new habits that serve you and support your physical and mental health can only make life easier and more fulfilling. Choose habits that help you. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Incorporate these 10 habits into your life:

1. Make a list of the most important things to get done. Completing important tasks each day makes life easier and less stressful. Most of us wake up each day and spend our mornings trying to figure out what do first. Whether it’s Monday or Saturday morning, know what needs to be done before your feet hit the floor.

> Before retiring for the evening, make a list of the things that need to be done the following day. Prioritize them and create a plan for getting them done.

> By making your list at night, you free up your mind to focus on other things. Your brain is free to work on solutions while you sleep. You can get started immediately and avoid procrastinating.

2. Exercise. Exercise boosts your mood. An intense workout can help to clear the mind, burn off excess energy, and reduce stress. It’s good for your body, mind, and waistline, too!

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Choose a form of exercise that you enjoy. Remember that there are plenty of options for exercising alone or with others. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Find a way to make exercise a part of your daily schedule.

3. Be grateful. When feeling stressed, you’re probably focusing on the negative. Everything seems to go south when your stress level is sky-high. But you likely have many things in your life that are great.

> On the drive to work, make a mental list of everything in your life that fills you with a sense of gratitude. It might be your health, children, spouse, home, or even the song on the radio.

> By focusing on the positive, you will raise your level of happiness.

4. Stay in the present. When your stress level starts to rise, you may dissociate from your environment and start living more inside your head. Stress has a way of making us fret about the future and focus on the negative. This cycle only magnifies the stress. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Imagining the worst isn’t going to help. If anything, it will make you less capable of dealing with the issue at hand.

> It’s important to bring yourself back to the present moment. Focusing on your environment is one of the best ways to snap back to reality.

> Look around and describe 10 things you see. If possible, describe them aloud. For example, “I’m looking out the window and see a small brown dog running through the grass. He has a red collar and floppy ears.”

> After you’ve described 10 things you see, go through a similar process with what you hear, smell, and feel. Depending on the environment, finding 10 items may be difficult, so just list as many as you can.

> By the time you’re done, you’ll be back in the present moment and out of your head. Your stress level will be lower, too! Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

5. Monitor your mood and self-talk. Most challenges are easier to prevent than they are to solve. It’s much easier to avoid gaining weight than it is to lose 100 pounds. It’s easier to brush your teeth each day than it is deal with severely decayed teeth.

> If you’re able to notice when your mood and thoughts start to go awry, it’s much easier to bring yourself back to a more positive condition. So when you first start to feel stressed, acknowledge it and begin to deal with it.

> It takes time to develop this habit, but it’s critical. You might want to set a timer to remind yourself to review how you’re feeling as each hour passes.

6. Spend some time on enjoyable activities. If you feel like you rarely get to take part in enjoyable activities, now is the perfect time to start. There’s rarely a better time than the present.

> Think about something you’ve always dreamed of doing and come up with a plan to make it a regular part of your life. Thirty minutes of enjoyable activity is bound to make you feel better.

7. Meditate or pray. Meditation is one of the best ways to give our brains a rest. Even sleep isn’t as mentally restful because we often spend all night dreaming about work or bizarre situations.

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Many individuals find benefit in prayer. It can provide a peaceful perspective and hope for the future.

> Consider adding meditation, prayer, or both into your daily schedule. Check out some resources at the bookstore or online to help you get started.

8. Practice forgiveness. If you’re unable to forgive, it’s difficult to be at peace. Focusing on old hurts likely gets you worked up. Furthermore, failing to forgive yourself for your own missteps can hold you back from the peace and harmony you desire. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

9. Be focused on solutions. Are you assertive when it comes to solving dilemmas, or do you stick your head in the sand and hope they’ll resolve themselves? Although many of us are great at distracting ourselves from unpleasant situations, this is rarely a good solution.

> When something is causing you stress, take the time to examine the issue, come up with the best possible solution, and put it into action. Isn’t this much better than hoping for the best?

10. Choose something to look forward to. It’s challenging to enjoy life if you lack something that excites you when you look at your future. You could choose to highly anticipate a vacation, the birth of a child, or your first book being published.

> We all need things to look forward to. Create a compelling future.

These 10 habits will serve you well. With a little effort, you might even come up with some additional habits that will be even more effective for your personal situation.

What will help you the most? Think about it. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

How to Create New Habits

Deciding to adopt new habits sounds great on paper, but it can be challenging to put them into action. How many times have you tried to exercise on a regular basis, only to find yourself back on the couch after a few days or weeks?

There are many strategies that can make installing and maintaining new habits easier. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Follow these steps to create long-lasting, positive habits:

1. Choose the time and place. Many positive habits will be centered on a time, place, or both. For example, you might exercise before work. Or you might meditate in the evenings in the spare bedroom.

> Having a specific time or place to perform and perfect your new habits is instrumental in ensuring they quickly become a regular part of your life.

2. Start with one habit at a time. It’s natural to resist change. Trying to change too much at once is frequently a recipe for disaster. Begin with a single habit. When you’re performing that habit reliably, add in another. Continue this until you’ve incorporated all the habits that you believe will relieve your stress and promote harmony in your life.

> Willpower is only available in finite quantities. Adding multiple new habits at the same time requires far more willpower than most of us have in reserve. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> There’s no hurry. Take whatever time is necessary to install each new habit completely. It might take a month or even longer.

3. Start with the easiest habit. How can you give yourself the best odds for success? Start with the habit you believe will be the easiest to perform religiously. A little success will encourage you to continue adding more positive habits, and make your progress much smoother.

4. Understand why. Consider each habit and what it will add to your life. If you’re unable to see the benefit in a particular habit, you’ll be unlikely to stick with it. Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

> Reminding yourself of the importance of the habit will dramatically increase the odds of being successful.

5. Reward yourself. As you reach various milestones, give yourself a little reward. Even a single week of 100% compliance is a reason to celebrate. Keep the rewards small, so you can have more of them.

6. Focus for 30 days. Psychologists often claim that it takes 30 days to create a new habit. Do everything you can to successfully get through those first 30 days successfully. You’ll likely keep the habit forever if you can just survive that month. Stick with it!

> Missing a single day here and there isn’t a big deal. However, missing two consecutive days is simply creating the habit of not doing the activity.

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

7. Have a trigger. Habits are much easier to create if we have something that reminds us to do them. A good trigger is something that automatically happens each day.

> For example, it might be getting out of bed, putting on your shoes, eating lunch, or sitting down at your desk. Anything that you already do every day can serve as a reminder to perform your new habit.

8. Prepare. Some habits require planning, equipment, software, or other consideration. If you’re going to exercise in the morning, you’ll probably need to set your alarm to wake up earlier. It might also make sense to have your workout clothes laid out and ready to go.

> Perhaps there’s an app that can assist you with getting organized. Perhaps you’re just missing the knowledge you need to be successful.

> Plan ahead and implement the necessary preparations to ensure your success.

New habits can be challenging to develop, but these strategies will make it go more smoothly.

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Remove Old Habits That Are Detrimental to Your Progress

Typically, we make life more challenging than it needs to be. It isn’t just the new habits that are challenging to install. We all have well-established negative habits that can prove to be formidable obstacles.

Contemplate these ideas for removing those pesky old habits from your life:

1. Make a list of your negative habits. Think about the habits you’re attempting to install and consider which of your current habits will be obstacles. Maybe you need more sleep, but you play poker every Wednesday night until 3:00 AM.

> Do you distract yourself by watching TV or overeating when you get stressed?

> Do you fall asleep whenever you try to meditate or pray?

2. Create positive alternatives that provide the same or a similar benefit. What do you gain by performing the negative habit? For example, playing poker might be about spending time with your friends. Is there another time or way you could see them without disrupting your sleep schedule?

> It’s important to replace the negative habit with a new habit that provides the same benefit. It’s very challenging to give up something that feels good. The key is to find something with similar benefits, but without the negative aspects.

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

What To Do When Challenges Occur

In most cases, new habits are successful at first. It’s definitely easier when motivation and enthusiasm are high. However, there are distractions that make compliance more challenging. Vacations, illnesses, and other unforeseen circumstances can result in a few days of non-compliance suddenly turning into weeks.

Consider these strategies to get past the hurdles when implementing your new habits:

1. Have a contingency plan. If you normally run after work, have a back-up plan in case it’s raining or you have to work late.

> Consider the potential obstacles to each habit and create solutions to deal with them effectively.

> Have a back-up plan ready to go before you need it.

2. Make a list of your negative triggers. Negative triggers are things that distract you from your new behaviors. It might be a particular friend that focuses on negative topics. Perhaps flipping through the channels before bedtime leads to you watching a movie until 2:00 AM.

3. Manage your expectations. Expecting too much, too soon, can have negative consequences. It isn’t necessary to be perfect. A few slip-ups aren’t a reason to get upset and discard your new routine. Expect to experience a few challenges.

> Avoid putting too much pressure on yourself. Giving a task too much emphasis can make it appear less appealing.

4. Start over even smaller. If you’re consistently struggling, start over at the beginning. But this time, make it easier on yourself. Maybe 30 minutes of exercise is too overwhelming at the beginning. Start with one minute. Even though one minute of exercise doesn’t have a lot of practical value, it makes getting to 2 minutes of exercise a little easier.

> Taking small steps and making adjustments can ensure your long-term success.

Habits That Relieve Stress and Promote Harmony in Your Life

Conclusion

By taking control of your habits, you can reduce stress and increase harmony in your life. Habits are powerful tools of efficiency. Consider how much time you’d lose each day if you had to concentrate on how to drive, tie your shoes, or brush your teeth. We’re able to do these tasks without even thinking about them. Sometimes we can even do other things at the same time.

But our habits can also betray us. Focusing on your struggles rather than finding solutions, staying up too late, and creating distractions are all examples of habits that fail to support peace and happiness.

Add a few positive habits and eliminate a few negative ones. In 30 days, you’ll be well on your way to making a drastic change in your life.

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Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence Them.pdf

We’re social creatures with the innate desire to be with others. This has been true for 10,000+ years. There was a time when surviving on your own was impossible. The old saying “It takes a village to raise a child” can be taken a step further. It once took a “village” to keep a person alive.

This need to connect with others is still alive and kicking in all of us.

Given that we’re hardwired to make friends, you would think that we’d naturally be good at this. Interestingly, this isn’t the case. One of the most common complaints of people, regardless of age, is that of feeling socially isolated and alone.

While the internet and social media can make it easier to have contact with others, the interaction is often shallow and lacking in substance. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

It’s never been easier to casually chat with someone on the other side of the world, but it’s never been more challenging to have a meaningful friendship or romantic relationship.

Interacting with others can be a challenging experience. It often creates a lot of fear. The fear can take the form of the fear of rejection, embarrassment, and just general anxiety that’s hard to pinpoint.

If your current social situation is less desirable than you prefer, this report will provide you with a new perspective on how to get others to want to be around you and keep them there. You’ll be able to interact confidently and successfully with people at work, strangers, friends, and family.

There are only 3 things required of you: Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

1. Understand the material and techniques at a high level. There’s not a lot to learn, but you must truly understand it. Avoid just skimming the information.

2. Use the techniques. Learning new social skills is like reading a book on tennis. You might know more about tennis after reading a book, but your game won’t improve without actually using the information.

3. Practice. The more you practice something, the better you’ll perform. In time, it all becomes second nature.

Getting others to like you isn’t as hard as you might think. The science is quite clear on the matter. Some people naturally do and say the right things to be likable, and others don’t. However, it’s not that hard to incorporate the most effective friend- attracting techniques into your day-to-day life.

You’ll be surprised by how simple these techniques are and how easy they are to use. Their effectiveness will astound you.

When people like you, it’s easy to influence them. When they don’t like you, it’s next to impossible to influence them unless you have a pretty big stick at your disposal. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

THE SIGNALS YOU SEND

You’re sending signals to everyone in your environment, even if you don’t realize it. You’re also scanning your environment for signals from others.

While there is a lot you can gather from looking at someone, your brain’s primary objective is safety. It’s attempting to determine if the people in your environment are potential friends or enemies.

Suppose you needed directions. There are certain people you feel comfortable asking, and others that you certainly do not. This is a conscious decision. It’s based on the signals you receive from that person.

Some people send out signals for friendship. Others send out the signals of a potential enemy.

Charm - How To Attract Others And Influence

Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

Friendly Signals

Before you speak with someone, you’re both assessing non-verbal communication signals. The majority of the time, others see you long before they hear you. Since they’re looking at you, it only makes sense to send effective signals to create interest and friendship.

Have you ever noticed that some people are much more noticeable than others? Some are readily noticed in a positive way, while others are noticed in a negative way.

Then there’s everyone else. Most people tend to blend into the background and fail to send either friendship or enemy signals. These people are very neutral in the signals they send. They aren’t seen as a potential friend or threat. If you’ve ever felt invisible, this is the reason why. You actually are “invisible” to the brain of everyone around you.

Once a person’s brain classifies you as “neutral”, you’re quickly forgotten. That brain has other concerns to deal with. You’re viewed as unlikely to provide anything positive or negative. You’re the equivalent of a tree to a person that doesn’t need any shade at the moment. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

Send friendship signals to those that interest you:

1. A genuine smile. Not that fake thing you throw around most of the time. It’s easy for people to spot a fake smile unless you’re Robert De Niro or Meryl Streep.

> Smiling people are viewed as happier, more confident, and more likable.

> This can be a good way to judge how others feel about you. We tend to smile at those we like and fail to smile and those we dislike.

> Faking a smile is extremely difficult without practice. The easiest way to tell the difference between a fake and a real smile is in the corners of the mouth and cheeks. In a real smile, the corners of the mouth are upturned, and the cheeks raise.

> Also, look for some wrinkling around the corners of the eyes during a real smile.

> Practice your smile in the mirror and see how real you can make it look.

2. Raising and lowering your eyebrows. This is a very quick movement. It’s really just a flash, and only takes a fraction of a second. The eyebrows only move minimally. You’ve probably never consciously noticed it in others, but you will now.

> Consider if you were angry or aggressive. Would your raise your eyebrows? Imagine yourself feeling angry and stomping through the grocery store. Your eyebrows would be down and would stay that way.

3. Tilt your head. Left or right, it’s entirely up to you. It’s believed we do this to expose our carotid arteries (those are the arteries in your neck that carry blood to the brain) to show we’re not a threat.

> This doesn’t mean that you walk around with your head laying over to one side. But, tilt your head a little bit while interacting with others that you’d like to get to know better.

> Studies have shown that people are rated as more attractive, trustworthy, and kind when they tilt their head during conversation. You can see this behavior in many animals, too. Watch the dogs in your neighborhood.

> Again, imagine you’re in a hostile mood. What do you do? You keep your chin tucked down which also protects your neck. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

> A lowered head, lowered eyebrows, and the lack of a smile send the very clear signal that you’re not a friend.

4. Eye contact. Eye contact can be tricky. Too short and it doesn’t communicate your intentions effectively. Too long and your target will view you as a potential enemy.

> Eye contact should be long enough to be obvious, but not longer than a second.

> Be sure to smile when breaking eye contact. Remember that it needs to be a genuine smile.

> Eye contact can be longer with someone you already know but would like to get to know better.

5. Touching. A small amount of touch can go a long way. Use touch sparingly. At the end of an interaction, touch the other person briefly on the arm or shoulder and watch for their non-verbal response.

> Any negative non-verbal signal is telling you that they aren’t ready for the relationship to proceed further.

> Touching is one of the most powerful ways to build trust and intimacy with another person.

6. Mirroring. Mirroring is exactly what it sounds like. You essentially mirror the body language and mannerisms of the other person. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

> If the other person tilts their head, you tilt yours.

> If the other person has their arms crossed, you cross yours.

> If the other person is slouching, you slouch, too.

> Avoid making your intentions too obvious. If you look like you’re mimicking the other person too closely in real time, it will be viewed as odd or awkward.

> Notice this behavior in others in social settings. Notice who is mirroring and who is not. We naturally mirror others when rapport is high. You can create rapport through mirroring.

> Once you’ve been mirroring someone for a short time, you can lead them. Change your body position and watch them follow you.

7. Lean in. When two people like each other, they in toward each other. You can see this everywhere you go in everyday life. Look for it.

> Also, notice when two people clearly don’t like each other. They lean away from each other.

> People that like each other also point their torsos toward each other. If they’re standing, they’ll also point their feet at each other. Notice the next time there’s a group of people standing and talking. Look at where everyone’s torso and feet are pointing.

> If you want to send a positive message to someone, face them with your body.

8. Use more gesturing. When two strangers meet, their gestures are minimal. Use more gestures when dealing with those people with whom you’d like to build a stronger relationship. These can include:

> Head nodding

> Smiling

> Obvious hand gestures

> Stronger eye contact

> Also, be sure to minimize any non-verbal signals that might be viewed as unfriendly.

9. Use head nodding to your advantage. Head nodding is a powerful tool that can be used to show that you’re listening and would like the other person to continue talking. But be careful! Head nodding can also send a negative signal in you do it incorrectly. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

> Rapid head nodding can send the signal that you’re disinterested or want the other person to finish talking so you can talk.

> A slow, single head nod tends to disrupt the conversation. It sends the signal that you’re not sure you believe what you’re hearing.

> Notice when others nod their heads and how they do it. What signal are they sending?

10. Give your full attention. We’ve all been talking to someone that isn’t paying attention to us. They might be looking at their phone or looking around the room.

> Listen intently to the other person.

> Avoid answering your phone during a conversation. If you want to score big points, take your phone out, send the call to voicemail and put your phone away. Put your attention firmly back on the other person.

11. Whisper. You know that you’ve made great progress in a relationship when you can whisper something to that person without it feeling weird to either of you. Use whispering to build your budding friendships.

12. Give verbal encouragement. These are those simple fillers that show support and encourage others to continue. These include statements like

> Yes”

> “I see”

> “True”

> “Go on”

> “Of course”

> Mmm hmm”

Be on the lookout for these signals in your everyday life. You might even take a trip to the mall or a store and just watch people. Look for these signals. Notice which people seem friendly and which do not. Try to determine why you come to those conclusions. What are the differences? Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

Charm - How To Attract Others And Influence Them

Non-Friendly Signals

Just as there are signals that demonstrate an openness to contact and communication, there are also signals that scream, “Stay away from me.” You’re picking up on these signals all the time from others that you see in your day-to-day life. You might be surprised at how often you’re sending these signals even if you don’t mean to.

Understanding these signals can be very useful. You’ll know when not to waste your time approaching someone. You’ll understand when your message isn’t being received positively. And, you’ll be able to avoid sending these signals inadvertently.

As a bonus, you’ll also learn how to keep others away when you don’t want to be bothered.

Be aware of these non-friendly signals in yourself and others:

1. Obvious facial tension. When others are hostile toward you, they clench their jaws, furrow their eyebrows, and just have a look of facial tension. This is a good sign that you’re not welcome in their space.

2. Rolling of the eyes. You’ve rolled your eyes at something someone has said. You’ve also been on the receiving end of the same gesture. Use this as a clue that people aren’t responding positively to what you’re saying.

> Also watch yourself. Rolling the eyes is automatic behavior that you might want to check, depending on the situation. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

3. Invading someone else’s personal space. Try standing too close to someone else and see what happens. You can stand closer to a friend than to a stranger. You can stand closer to someone in certain countries than in others, or even within different states. Watch for people’s reactions as you move closer to them.

4. Any other obvious signals. There are many other signs of negativity, but we’re so skilled at noticing them in others that they hardly require mention. Just ensure you’re not doing any of these if you want to make more friends and influence more people.

> Scrunching the nose

> Wearing clothing or accessories that send the wrong signals

> Aggressive stance

> Impolite gestures

The signals people send regarding their potential friend or enemy status are unconscious. You’re now aware of them, so you can send whatever signals you like. Use these signals to your advantage.

Be on the lookout for signals from others you meet in your day-to-day life. It will be clear who is interested in being your friend or lover, and who is not.

THE #1 RULE TO GET OTHERS TO LIKE YOU

Why do we have a hard time not eating ice cream, pizza, chocolate, or potato chips if they’re available? It’s because they make us feel good. We’re more hedonistic than we like to admit. We like to feel good. We like to feel comfortable. They don’t call it comfort food for nothing!

The same can be said about texting, watching TV, sleeping in, sex, drugs, alcohol, or snuggling under a warm blanket and watching a good movie.

These things make us feel good.

Not surprisingly. The people we enjoy being around are the ones that make us feel good. Most importantly, we like the people that make us feel good about ourselves. Conversely, we don’t like the people that make us feel bad about ourselves.

CHARM: How to Attract Others and Influence Them

Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

If you can keep this simple rule in mind in your dealings with others, you’ll have more friends and influence than you know what to do with. Whenever you make someone feel good about themselves, they’ll want to experience that again. Be the cause of those feelings and others will want to spend more time with you.

Make people feel good about themselves, and you’ll have friends for life!

Try these techniques: Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

1. Give sincere compliments. It’s important to be careful with this one. It’s not easy to give a sincere compliment to someone you don’t know. You simply don’t know enough about them.

> Avoid giving obvious compliments. For example, a beautiful woman has been told she’s beautiful about 10,000 times.

> Compliments are best used on those that you already know.

2. Show an interest in the other person’s life. This is easy to accomplish just by asking a few questions.

> How was your weekend? What did you do?”

> “You said you were going to have lunch with your sister. How is she?”

> “What are your favorite hobbies?”

> “Tell me about your family.”

> “What kind of dog do you have?”

3. Be empathetic. Make the conversation about the other person. Be concerned and supportive.

4. Provide rationalizations. We rationalize our failure, misfortunes, and misdeeds all day long. We love it if someone else helps us do it. Suppose someone didn’t get a promotion they were expecting. You could say something like:

> “That company never seems to be able to spot real talent.”

> “The hiring manager for that department only likes to hire men.”

> “Everyone knows that the person that got the job is the golden child of this place.”

> Help people justify their failures, and you’ll have a new friend.

5. Ask for a favor. Most people have a hard time refusing a simple request. Whether it be to carry a box, hold a door, or to pick up something while the other person is at the store, you make friends by asking for favors. It seems counter intuitive, but it works for a few reasons:

> People feel good about themselves when they do a favor for someone. You’ll be credited with making them feel good about themselves, even if they aren’t consciously aware of this effect.

> People like to be consistent. By doing you a favor, they’re acting as if they like you. It only makes sense to do favors for people you like, so if they’re doing a favor for you, they must like you. At least, that’s what their brain leads them to believe.

How someone feels about you is strongly correlated to how they feel when you’re around them.

You don’t even have to be the actual cause! If they get good news when you’re present, their brain will attribute the good feeling to you. They could be looking at you while they eat a candy bar and feel more positive about you as a result.

It’s even more powerful to have a positive influence on how they feel about themselves. You can be the equivalent to a powerful drug in someone’s life. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

Charm - How To Attract Others And Influence

WHAT WE FIND ATTRACTIVE IN OTHERS

We’re attracted to many things. Physical attractiveness, money, power, and the other usual things are attractive in our society. Unfortunately, it’s not easy to instantly create a more attractive face, make a million dollars, or become a corporate juggernaut.

Luckily, there are things we can control that are attractive to others.

Make yourself more attractive to others simply and easily: Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

1. Similarity. We like others that are like us. We like people that have the same interests, attitudes, and spend their time in ways similar to how we like to spend time. For example, a Republican is more likely to like a fellow Republican than a Democrat.

> Someone who likes baseball is more likely to make friends with a baseball fan than with someone who hates baseball.

> Look for common ground with others and make it apparent to them. Highlight your similarities.

> You might both like dogs, wear similar clothes, have the same background, attended the same school, or work in similar fields.

2. Curiosity. We’ve wondered what’s on the other side of the mountain or at the bottom of a hole for thousands of years. As a species, we’re still wondering how to power a spaceship to another solar system, live longer, or how to fully harness the power of the wind. We’re curious by nature. You can use this to your advantage.

> This can be especially useful in dating situations. Women, especially, love to figure out everything they can about a man that interests them. It’s almost a game.

> Have an interesting life but reveal the details of your life slowly. Others will wonder what you’re all about. Imagine you had a quiet coworker that loved to skydive, hiked in the Himalayas, and raised llamas. You’d be curious, to say the least.

3. Reciprocity. This is like asking for a favor in reverse. Instead, you’re going to do something for someone without even being asked. You might pick up the lunch tab or help them catch their dog. You could even just offer to let them use your pen if it’s clear they need one.

> Once you’ve done something for them, they feel compelled to do something nice for you.

4. Be open. Most of us are quite guarded with our challenges and secrets. We don’t want others to know we’re having health issues, financial issues, or had a nose job in our 20’s.

> However, the more you’re willing to reveal, the closer the other person will feel to you. They’ll also be more likely to disclose personal information to you.

> Be careful. You don’t want to tell someone you don’t know very well your deepest and darkest secrets. They might be used against you some day.

> Be sure to avoid revealing things that highlight unattractive qualities. For example, you probably wouldn’t want to share that you’ve been cheating on your spouse for the last decade, shoplift, or spiked your neighbor’s tires as part of an ongoing feud.

> Be caring and respectful when you receive a disclosure from someone else. This is a great way to strengthen any relationship. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

5. Have a sense of humor. Humor is attractive across all cultures. Those that are able to use humor effectively are seen as more attractive and likable. Use a light touch in your social interactions and inject humor where appropriate.

> A good sense of humor puts others at ease and reduces anxiety. This is a great environment for creating friendships.

6. Be around more often. We are more likely to create relationships with those we see regularly. Neighbors are more likely to become friends than people that live at opposite ends of the street.

> You’re more likely to be friends with a coworker than with someone that works at another location.

Find ways to spend more time around those you would like to become friends with.

7. Hang around with the popular people. Whether you’re in grade school, college, or have been working for 30 years, it’s best to hang out with the cool kids. The status assigned to you is largely relative to the company you keep.

> Studies have shown that you’ll be viewed as more intelligent if you associate with people that are known to be intelligent. The same goes for attractiveness or a lack of attractiveness.

> Think about how you want to be viewed and associate with those people. This means you might want to join a yoga studio and an organization that wants to save the whales. Or, it might mean that you want to hang out with wealthy real estate investors. What message do you want to send?

8. Be happy with yourself. High self- esteem is attractive. Low self-esteem is not. The same is true for self- confidence. People low in both attributes are less likely to be open and are always on guard. Neither is attractive.

9. Avoid being too available. There’s a reason diamonds are so valuable. It’s their scarcity. We don’t value things that are right in front of our face as much as we do those things that are less available. You’ll be seen as more valuable if you make yourself less available.

> This is easy to accomplish. Answer personal emails and text messages slowly.

> Be unavailable for an entire weekend.

> Have regular plans.

You don’t have to look like a movie star, or have the bank account of one, to be attractive to others. Use these tools to make yourself a more attractive prospect for friendship. Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

COMMON CONVERSATION ERRORS

Making friends and getting others to like and trust you is relatively simple. You encourage people to talk about themselves, demonstrate that you’re a great listener, and use the various tools to grow the connection between you.

However, there are many things you can inadvertently do to disrupt the rapport and flow of communication.

Avoid these common conversation errors if you want to attract others into your life: Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

1 Avoid talking about your problems or complaining too much. Everyone has problems, and everyone is struggling to deal with them. They don’t have the time or energy to deal with yours, too. Avoid being too negative.

2. Avoid talking about yourself excessively. It’s boring. Remember that it’s important to make the other person feel good about themselves. You can’t do that by only talking about yourself all of the time.

3. Keep meaningless chit-chat to a minimum. Be the person that’s known for having meaningful conversations. Avoid gossip, too.

4. Avoid topics that will make the other person feel bad or upset. Avoid conversations about starving children, politically charged topics, or anything else that will create a negative emotion in the other person

5. Be emotional, but not too much. If your emotions are outside the normal range for the topic and situation, you’ll be viewed negatively.

We often destroy a good conversation or budding relationship by saying the wrong things. It’s not always easy to undo the damage caused by a verbal misstep.

Remember to keep things positive. If you make the other person feel bad about themselves, bad in general, or bad about you, you’re going to struggle to create, build, or maintain a connection.

HOW TO FORGE STRONGER CONNECTIONS ONLINE

The internet can be a great tool for building your social network. People have successfully found jobs, started businesses, created friendships, and met their future spouses online. The potential really is unlimited.

While there can be pitfalls, it would be silly to ignore the possibilities the internet provides.

The internet has many advantages for creating social contacts and influence:

Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

1. The internet is a great social tool for introverts. There’s a layer of anonymity and a lack of timeliness on the internet that appeals to introverts.

> If someone asks you a question face to face, you can’t sit there for two minutes and think about your answer, but you can online. The other person assumes you’re busy, getting a drink, or using the restroom.

> It’s easier to start a conversation with someone on the internet than it is in person.

2. It’s much easier to find others with something in common. Whether your interest is in 80’s music, playing horseshoes, American bulldogs, spearfishing, or organic farming, it’s easy to find thousands of people with the same interests. That’s not as easy to do offline.

3. There are plenty of people available. There are roughly 4.2 billion people online. That’s over half of the world’s population. You won’t have any problems finding someone to talk to.

> How many people do you have access to in your day-to-day life? Less than 4.2 billion.

4. Rejection is much easier to take. Considering how easy it is to start and end friendships online, the sting and embarrassment of rejection is greatly reduced. Of course, if you’re posting questionable photos online, the possibility for great embarrassment goes up considerably!

5. People are much more open online. People feel more comfortable sharing information online than they do in person. Rapport is built easier and faster online.

The internet is here to stay, so ensure you’re taking advantage of it. The ease of contacting similar people, with similar interests, in high numbers, is hard to beat. If you’re introverted, the benefits are even greater. Rejection and failure are easier to swallow online. Use the internet to build your social network and influence.

ADDITIONAL TIPS FOR INFLUENCING OTHERS

If people like you, and you can make them feel good about themselves, they’ll do just about anything for you. But there are additional ways to influence others – even people you barely know.

It comes down to trust, gain, and loss. If you can control the perception of these three things, you can get someone to move a mountain for you.

Consider these strategies: Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

1. Emphasize the benefits. What does the other person need? If you’re selling your services or product to someone else, you must know their needs if you want to be successful. Present a solution to their problem.

> Even in dating situations, people are constantly weighing, “What’s in it for me? What will I gain from being in this relationship?”

2. Keep it simple. A confused mind says “no.” If you want to influence someone to do something, keep it simple. Complex ideas are confusing. People worry that deceit is hidden amongst the complexity.

3. Authority. Influencing others is easier if they view you as an authority in that particular field or situation. We all like to follow an expert. We trust that they know what they’re doing.

> Be able to demonstrate or explain your experience.

> Social proof is great for establishing certain types of authority.

4. Show what they can lose by not listening to you. We like to gain something positive. Even more, we hate to lose something. Consider that earning $100 isn’t as motivating as keeping $100 that someone is trying to take from you. Create the pleasure of positive gain or create pain via loss.

Charm – How To Attract Others And Influence

AN ACTION PLAN

Let’s come up with a few ideas, so you can actually experience some benefits. Instead of picking up another book and sitting at home reading more on the topic, let’s get busy and put what you know to use.

This will do more for your life than acquiring more information. Once you’ve mastered this information, then it would be wise to learn more.

Use these strategies to put your new knowledge into action:

1. Keep your eyes open and observe others. Go to the mall. Sit at the park. Pay attention wherever you go. Watch how others communicate with each other, both verbally and non-verbally. Look for the signs and techniques that you’ve learned in this report.

2. Practice sending friendly signals everywhere you go. Smile, tilt your head, and give your eyebrows a quick raise. When you receive positive signals in return, say “hello.”

3. Practice making others feel good about themselves. Do this with everyone you talk to. Notice what happens.

4. Pick a victim. Choose one person to be the focus of your efforts. It could be a coworker, casual acquaintance, or the bartender at your local hangout. Pull out all the stops and use this information relentlessly without overwhelming them. See what happens.

5. Choose one meaningful relationship in your life that is struggling. It could be with your boss, spouse, child, parent, or good friend. See how much you can strengthen the relationship with these tools.

This is an effective, but simple, plan that can make a big difference in your life. All the information in the world is of little value if you just store it in your head. Put it to use and see how much control you have over your life. Practice and observe. That’s all it takes.

CONCLUSION

Attracting and influencing others is quite simple. There is great interest in this topic, so a lot of research has already been done for you. More information is as easy to come by as a trip to the local library, bookstore, or an appropriate website.

Be vigilant regarding your nonverbal behavior. Others are sizing you up and make judgements before you ever utter a word. Send friendly signals wherever you go. Notice the signals given off by others. It’s not hard to approach someone when their body language is inviting you to talk to them.

Remember that the information you’ve learned must be applied if you want to be successful. Most people gather information but fail to incorporate it into their lives. Only when the information is used does it become valuable.

Make a plan to become more attractive to others. You’ll have plenty of friends and plenty of influence as a result.

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Form Empowering Habits

Form Empowering Habits

How you go about your daily routines ultimately determines the life you live. How can you fill your life with abundance and fulfillment? How can you create the life you truly desire?

The answer is to form empowering habits that ensure you live the life you seek.

Habits are Critical to Creating the Life You Desire

Life is all about your habits: Form Empowering Habits

1. Daily routines, or habits, makeup most of your life. What you do every single day over and over again combines, over time, to become the very foundation of your life.

2. Habits are automatic behaviors. When you develop a habit, it takes that action out of the realm of having to make a conscious choice every time you do it. You don’t have to think about it or make yourself do something once it’s a habit. You just do it automatically.

3. Habits can be empowering or inhibiting. Positive habits help you get what you want while negative habits hold you back, preventing whatever you want from ever happening.

4. Positive habits create the life you desire. If you form positive habits, you’re more likely to enjoy the riches and fulfillment of the good life you want.

Your habits are the most basic elements of your life. Whether you look at your day-to-day routines or your overall life, it’s made up of all the behaviors you do. Those actions practiced consistently are your habits. So if you establish positive, empowering habits, you’ll live the life of your dreams. Form Empowering Habits

Form Empowering Habits To Create The Life You Desire

The Science of Habit Development

New research by Phillippa Lally and others at University College London has truly shed light on the science behind habit development. Form Empowering Habits

Here are the results of their research and some suggestions for creating new habits based on their findings:

1. A behavior must be repeated 66 times consecutively before it forms a habit. If you’ve ever tried to establish a habit by performing a behavior every day for 14 or 21 days, it probably didn’t work because you didn’t do the behavior enough times in a row in order to successfully develop the habit. Try it again, but this time for 66 days.

2. Repeat the behaviors in the same setting or situation. You’re more likely to form a habit when you keep doing a behavior in the same place and/or situation. Where you are affects habit formation.

> In essence, if you’re in the same place when you’re doing the new behavior over and over, you’re more likely to successfully form a habit.

> Ideally, perform your behavior in the same room for the first 66 days. Whether you do the behavior in your home, office, or elsewhere, keep it in the same locale at first, and then you can expand to apply it in other places after you’ve established it as a habit.

3. Forming a new habit is “cue-dependent.” Whetheryouforma habit depends somewhat on cues in your environment and behaviors. There are 2 types of such cues, according to Lally and the other researchers: situational and contextual.

> Situational cues originate from your environment or location while contextual cues are other behaviors you do in conjunction with or related to the new behavior.

> An example of a situational cue is what you see in the morning when you first enter your kitchen: you see your coffeemaker and then make some coffee. Your coffee maker is, therefore, something that triggers you to make your morning coffee, which you do every morning (out of habit).

> An example of a contextual cue in this case of morning coffee is that as soon as you shut off the alarm and put on your robe, you head to the kitchen to prepare your coffee. Getting up and putting on your robe trigger you to go make your coffee. Form Empowering Habits

4. Consistency is an important key to establishing habits. Results of the research also emphasize the importance of consistency when trying to form a habit – especially at the beginning stages of creating the habit.

> Although the researchers found you could skip a day when trying to establish a habit, it’s unknown how many total days you could skip during the 66 days and still successfully form a habit.

> During the studies, those who skipped days initially during the 66 day period were less likely to successfully establish a habit. One could theorize that you’re setting up your brain to become accustomed to a habit early on in the process.

> Make a pact with yourself to repeat the behavior for at least 66 days without fail. Start the new behavior at a time that you’re fairly sure you can repeat the desired behavior without interrupting your new routine.

5. Pair the new behavior with one you already do regularly. For example, if you want to start flossing your teeth, lay the package of floss right beside your toothpaste, or even on top of it, to be reminded to floss after you brush your teeth. Be consistent about flossing your teeth every single time you brush them.

Focusing on what you really want it life and developing habits that support those goals will ensure you live the life you seek. Applying the information from this research will help you succeed in developing these new, positive habits.

Let’s take a look at negative habits and their consequences, substituting positive habits for negative habits, and developing new, empowering habits. Form Empowering Habits

Form Empowering Habits To Create The Life You Desire

Negative Habits and Their Devastating Effects

Consider the habitual behaviors you exhibit that eventually lead to unwanted, negative situations in your life.

Negative habits can produce results that are completely contrary to what you desire.

You wouldn’t consciously choose to keep yourself from what you truly want. But you keep repeating those habits anyway just because they are what they are: habits.

Honestly evaluate how what you’re doing is affecting your life. Maybe you haven’t achieved your work goals or your health isn’t as good as it could be because of your negative habits. Form Empowering Habits

Subconsciously or even consciously, you experience some type of benefit from continuing to perform these negative habits and that’s one reason you continue them. But is that benefit more important to you than what you’ve dreamed for your life?

CASE VIGNETTE #1

Tom wants to play basketball with the men in his neighborhood who get together every Saturday at 10 a.m. He used to love shooting hoops in college and for a few years afterward when he first started working. He was also in better physical condition then.

Even though he talks all the time about wanting to get back into shape, it’s a challenge because Tom is now 30 pounds overweight and already struggles with high cholesterol. After work during the week, Tom’s just too tired to do anything. And he loves to sleep in on Saturdays.

Tom feels entitled to stay in bed on Saturday mornings after getting up at 7:00 a.m. to go to work all week. So, he sleeps late — until around 9:00 a.m. Then he has his favorite breakfast: sausage, gravy, and biscuits with 2 glasses of milk, a glass of orange juice, and a banana. By the time he prepares and eats his breakfast, he’s in no condition to play basketball.

In this example, what are the benefits to Tom to keep repeating his Saturday morning habits? How is he being reinforced to continue the behaviors that are actually keeping him from what he truly wants?

1. He gets to lie in bed longer, which he apparently longs to do.

2. Tom loves the tastes of his breakfast. It feels decadent to him to eat a breakfast so full of fat, calories, and flavors. Frankly, it just tastes good. Form Empowering Habits

3. There are no real demands on him during this time. He doesn’t have to get dressed, go out, or accomplish anything.

4. Tom deserves it. He’s convinced himself he deserves to lie in bed as long as he pleases, eat his unhealthy breakfast, and choose not to play basketball. Emotionally, he sends himself the message that after working all week, he can behave however he wants, regardless of the consequences long-term.

The fact is that Tom’s Saturday morning habits of sleeping late, eating a breakfast loaded with calories and fats, and avoiding playing basketball set the tone for his entire week and maybe even his life!

Tom has consciously convinced himself he’s doing what he wants. But is he really? After all, he’s repeating a series of bad habits.

Which would he truly choose — being in good physical condition by playing basketball and hanging out with the guys on Saturday morning or continuing to stay in the shape he’s in?

Your turn…

Take a minute or two to ponder the situations in your life you’d like to change. Are you like Tom — engaging in negative habits from which you consciously or unconsciously derive benefits?

How are you reinforcing your unsavory habits? What do you say to yourself that encourages you to continue repeating these actions? Form Empowering Habits

If you see a bit of Tom in yourself, you might want to begin consciously focusing on the things that are more important to you to obtain a different, more pleasing result.

You’ll benefit even more from establishing a positive habit than you derive from repeating a negative habit.

Form Empowering Habits To Create The Life You Desire

Substitute Positive Habits for Your Negative Habits

To interrupt a negative habit, you could substitute a positive habit. Basically, you’re replacing an old, negative habit with a new, positive habit. Those positive actions will aid you in achieving the results you want in life.

Considering Tom’s scenario above, let’s apply this information. Form Empowering Habits

Tom’s best bet is to realize the effects these habits are having on his life. Once he consciously connects with the damage he’s doing to himself by practicing these habits and decides that he truly wants to change, he can then begin work to build the life he truly seeks.

He can replace his negative habits with positive ones. To do this, Tom can:

1. Set his alarm on Saturdays for 8:30a.m. He’ll still get an extra hour and a half of sleep.

2. Choose to eat a smaller breakfast of one piece of sausage, one biscuit, and one egg to experience the flavors he truly enjoys.

3. Show up to play basket ball with the guys at 10:00 a.m.

4. Allow him self a couple of hours to rest after he shoots some hoops.

5. Repeat this behavior every Saturday consistently for 66 times. In the least, Tom should avoid skipping Saturdays during the first months of his new behavior.

6. Ensure he’s home on Friday nights so he’s in his own home (the same location) on Saturday mornings.

7. Establish situational cues to trigger him to perform the positive behaviors that will lead to habit formation. For example, Tom can lay out his basketball clothes and shoes so they’re the first things he sees when his alarm sounds.

Apply this type of thinking in your own case. Read the next hypothetical vignette and review the steps to changing behavior from a negative habit to a positive one.

CASE VIGNETTE #2

Maybe you want to be healthier and lose a few pounds. But for the last several years, you’ve taken the no-fuss, easy way out at breakfast time. You started your day with a cinnamon roll or doughnut. It’s an easy breakfast and you can just reach for it and go.

How can you change this continuous loop of starting your day off with a negative habit to doing something that leads to your good health— a positive habit? Form Empowering Habits

1. Acknowledge to yourself that your cinnamonroll /doughnut habitis a negative habit. It’s something you do over and over again, even though you feel you shouldn’t.

> Consciouslyconnectwhatyou’redoingtoitsnegativeeffects, which in this case could be high cholesterol, excess pounds, and late morning headaches due to a lack of protein and overload of fats and carbs in your morning “meal.”

2. Consider ways you can replace your negative habit with a more positive habit. Ask yourself, what could I do instead?

3. You could stop buying cinnamon rolls and doughnuts. If they’re not in the house, you won’t engage in this habit.

4. Try purchasing fresh fruits of your choice that are quick and easy: bananas, pears, and apples, for example. When you substitute “positive” foods that could help reduce your cholesterol and help you manage your weight better for your baked items, you’ll eventually develop a positive habit that takes the place of your negative one.

5. Place fruit in the area where you used to keep your cinnamon rolls and doughnuts to set up your situational cue, which is the sight of the fruit. Also, you can’t perform your negative habit (grabbing a doughnut or roll) if the source of it is gone.

6. Choose a fruit to eat every morning. Continue this behavior every day without deviating from your new plan for at least 66 days in a row. If you do, you’ll form a positive habit that replaces your old, negative one. At the very least, skip no days of eating fruit for at least the first half of the 66 day period.

You can successfully replace a negative habit with a new, positive and empowering one. Applying the above process to your own situation will help you wipe out old habits that inhibit you from living your best life. Form Empowering Habits

Develop New, Empowering Habits

There may be times when you don’t have a negative habit that thwarts you from achieving your goals. However, you still may want to hasten the pace at which you move forward to attain them. In this situation, you can develop new, positive habits that support your intentions and automatically lead you right toward your goal.

Once a positive action becomes a habit, you’ll do it automatically without even thinking about it. So positive habits make it easier for you to create the life you desire.

CASE VIGNETTE #3

Here’s another hypothetical case vignette to illustrate how you can develop a positive habit:

Suppose you want to become an expert in your field so you’ll receive a promotion at work and make more money. Although you really enjoy your job, you’ve never really invested any of your personal time in your career. You don’t read journals, trade magazines, or even brief articles or blogs on the internet about your field.

How can you expand your professional knowledge and horizons?

Examine these suggestions:

1. Subscribe to a professional or trade journal in your field. It’s important to have tangible evidence of your goal to become an authority in your field. Place books and journals on a coffee table and your bedside table. These are your situational cues to devote time to your study at home.

2. Schedule time in your day to read about yourprofession and explore trending topics related to your job. Even 30 minutes each day will whet your appetite to delve more into your profession and the specific areas that interest you. If you can, establish your study time to occur at the same time, say from 7:30 to 8:00 p.m. during evenings at home.

3. Join a local business organization that addresses your type of work. Attend the meetings consistently, whether they’re weekly or monthly. Remind yourself you’re working to establish the habit of cultivating your work interests to be more successful and achieve your goals.

4. Engage in activities to cultivate your special interests. Checkout library books, meet co-workers for coffee to discuss work for an hour a week, and surf the internet to see what’s going on in your profession.

Starting new behaviors that you want to develop into a positive habit takes a certain amount of self-motivation, focus, and effort on your part.

As you can see from the above illustration, if you want something badly enough, you must take action by performing behaviors repeatedly and consistently. Then, you’ll establish positive habits that will lead you to the life you dream of.

Summary

Recognize how your habits impact your existence. Your entire life is made from the cloth of all the habits you perform day after day, week after week, and month after month. When you work to establish positive habits related to your goals, you’ll be more likely to obtain the life you seek.

Research regarding habit development reveals that you must repeat a behavior 66 times, ideally, consecutively (without skipping) in order to establish a habit. If you learn to set up situational and contextual cues to trigger you to do the new positive behaviors, you’ll be more successful in forming positive habits that will provide you with the existence you desire.

Consider how your negative habits negatively affect your life. Be honest with yourself about the results of your behaviors. Then, take conscientious steps to replace your negative habits with more positive ones. Also, work to establish positive habits using the research on habit development.

When you include your life goals in your daily routines by forming and continuing positive, empowering habits, you’ll create the life you desire.

9 Building Blocks for Personal Empowerment

9 Building Blocks for Personal Empowerment

9 Building Blocks of Personal Empowerment

Are you pleased with your life journey? How do you spend your days? Do you engage in projects that bring fulfillment to you?

When you’re living a life of personal empowerment, your passion will overflow onto those around you. And as the passion permeates the very air you breathe, you’ll feel confident and in control of your life because you can produce all the things you want for yourself and your loved ones. 9 Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

This guide will help you live an empowered life. If you follow through with these suggestions and obtain the support you require, your personal power will flourish. Start living the life of your dreams!

Resolve to Succeed

When you decide to succeed, a life filled with adventure, love, and personal empowerment is yours.

Try these strategies to ensure you’re consistently working toward success:

1. Assess your self-confidence. Do you believe in yourself and know that you can do anything you put your mind to? What are your strengths?

>. When you know your strong points, you can capitalize on them and get ahead in life. 9 Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

>. Playing to your strengths will ensure you stay on the road to success and boost your personal power a few notches.

2. Ask yourself what success means to you. Will you consider yourself a success when you make a certain yearly salary, have a specific type of lifestyle, or live in a particular place?

9 BUILDING BLOCKS OF PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT

> If you were to finish this sentence, “Success for me would be…,” what would you say?

> Establish your own meaning of success and then live in a way that helps you achieve it.

Making a conscious decision to be successful is an effective way of opening up yourself to the possibilities of achieving your dreams. When you decide that something will happen, you’re more likely to take the necessary steps to ensure that it does. Resolving to succeed is a hallmark of personal empowerment. 9 Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

Believe Positive Things Will Happen

Sometimes in life, difficult things occur that might discourage you from pursuing the path you desire. An important aspect of becoming personally empowered is to believe that bright and beautiful things are coming your way, regardless of the rough waters you may have recently encountered.

When you’re sure that positive things will happen to you, your empowerment level rises.

Putting these strategies into action will pump up your belief in the positive:

1. Train yourself to notice the positive. Some days, events in your life can present great challenges. However, if you can teach yourself to consistently focus on the positive aspects of people, places, and things, you’ll open your eyes and start taking advantage of life’s many possibilities.

>. For example, maybe your co-worker received the promotion you’ve dreamed of getting. If you look at the positive aspects of your current position, you’ll be inspired to continue your quest for a job you love and deserve.

> You could say, “I’m already good at this job, so now I’ll have time to be great” or “I’m going to make this next year my personal best in terms of work performance.”

2. Hang out with people who achieve their goals. It’s usually pretty simple to spot successful people. They pay their bills on time and take good care of their families. They excel at work and are always offering a helping hand to someone who needs it. Their positivity is practically contagious. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

>. Your confidence will be buoyed when you see the progress others make to accomplish their life goals. Spending time with high-achievers will allow you to observe firsthand how to become goal-oriented and remain positive.

3. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt. Even though you’ll likely make a mistake or two on the road to personal empowerment, learn to see those errors as necessary detours from your path. When you elect to be positive about your missteps, you’ll be less inclined to get held back by negativity.

>. Saying something as simple as, “Everyone makes mistakes and that was one of mine” reminds you of your fallibility as a human being and allows you to move on with a renewed spirit.

A positive mind breeds positive results. Approaching all aspects of life with positivity is one of the most empowering actions you can take.

Keep Your Dreams Fresh

9 BUILDING BLOCKS OF PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT

Even if you haven’t thought about it for quite some time, you probably have something you’ve always wanted to do in life. Do you still have those yearnings for the future? How do you react when you’re thinking about your dreams? Do you try to push those thoughts out of your mind?

Never abandon your dreams! Our dreams for the future can keep us moving forward in life, looking, reaching, and achieving. View your dreams as great motivators. Your dreams help empower you to seek out the life you truly want.

Put these strategies into action today to keep your dreams fresh and alive: Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

1. Think about your dreams each day. It sounds simple, but how often do you really reflect on your dreams? Each morning as you’re brushing your teeth, look yourself in the eyes and think about what you’ll specifically do that day to move toward accomplishing your dreams.

>. For example, if someday you want to move to New York City, spend an hour after work exploring the streets and neighborhoods of The Big Apple on your computer.

2. Create a vision board. Fill your board with symbols that represent your dreams. The key ingredients of a vision board are photos and printed words that signify the things you want most in life.

>. For example, in keeping with the dream of moving to New York City, you could find some photos in magazines of buildings in New York and signs of the places you’d love to frequent there, like the Met, Broadway, and Long Island.

>. Cut out those photos and put them on your vision board. Write down some words to show your excitement about your dream like, “I want to see all the shows on Broadway” or “I’m moving to New York” and include them on your board.

>. lace your board where you can see it daily.

>. When you look at your vision board, you can mentally see it happening. This will empower you to live your desired life.

3. Talk about your dreams. When your dreams are alive in your thoughts and words, you’re closer to making them happen. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

>. Have coffee with a friend and share what you discovered when exploring the aspects of one of your dreams or tell your parents what you want to do. It helps a great deal when others are talking about you and your dreams as well.

4. Take a trip and explore your dream location or devote time to your life goals. Keeping your dream in the forefront means you’ll have tangible bits of it always with you until you can actually make it happen. So, if you yearn to move to a particular locale, visit the area occasionally to soak in the sights and sounds of it.

>. When you set aside time for activities related to your dreams, it empowers you by letting you see that you can one day bring those dreams to fruition.

Holding on to your dreams throughout your life will provide you with steady reinforcement to perform, excel, and achieve. As your dreams stay alive, so do your possibilities to live an empowered life.

Change Your Mind to Change Your Life

You might find yourself in a particular place in life that’s not satisfying to you. When you consider your living situation, you may feel unsure about how or why you ended up this way.

When you find yourself in a position or heading in a direction different from what you’d like, remind yourself you have the power to change your path. Upon reaching this point, knowing how to change your mind and your life are incredibly empowering forces.

When you’re ready, take advantage of these tips to alter your existence: Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

1. Acknowledge where you are. Take note of what you’d like to change about your life. Realize that whatever you’re currently doing is preventing you from reaching your ultimate goal.

>. Bringing the facts into your awareness will help tremendously in terms of determining that you need to alter your course.

2. Weigh the pros and cons. After discovering you want to alter something in your life, consider completing a pro and con list regarding your changes.

>. When you review the pluses and minuses before you make a decision, you’re informed about the impact the change will have on your life. Then, you’ll be ready for the challenges that change may bring.

3. Institute the changes immediately. As soon as you’ve determined the direction you want to go and why, begin making at least one alteration as soon as possible. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

>. If you thoroughly thought things through and arrived at the conclusion to change, there’s no time like the present to begin turning the life you have into the life you seek.

4. Tweak things if necessary. After you shift gears and institute some of the changes, you may notice some other minor things you could do to be headed more directly toward your goal. Go ahead and make the adjustments without holding back.

Allow yourself the time and space to change the things about your life that are leading you astray. When you’re fully following your dreams, you’ll feel empowered and ignited with the passion to create the life you seek.

Take Action: Go After What You Want

Have you ever felt like you wanted to live life differently than how you’re currently living, yet you’re unsure where to begin? Your dreams have always been in the back of your mind, tantalizing you to do something. However, you feel uncertain about how your life will go when you do begin the path toward the good life.

Follow these steps for how to begin to live the very life you’ve always wanted:

1. Know that you deserve to have the life you want. Rather than saying, “My partner wouldn’t want me to do this” or “My life will be harder if I give up the salary I make now to pursue my dreams,” consider the idea that you deserve the life you long for, regardless of what it takes to do it.

>. When you truly connect with the fact that you’re entitled to have everything you want, those feelings will push you forward toward empowerment. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

2. Think it through and problem-solve. Refuse to let discouraging thoughts stop you. Talk to your partner if you fear they may not support you. Listen to their position and then share your hopes and dreams with them.

>. Ponder together how you could live on less money, if that’s what it will take to get what you yearn for.

3. Complete the first step toward your dream now. If you want to become an actor, take an acting class in the evenings at a local college or university. Test the waters and incorporate your ultimate goal into your current life. Fit in parts of your dream whenever you can.

>. Satisfy your craving to do what you want by taking baby steps toward it.

>. Becoming empowered is all about pursuing what you want, even if it’s an inch at a time.

4. Do your homework. When you research what you want to accomplish, it will push you into action. Plus, doing your homework is taking action.

5. Ask for support. If you require childcare twice a week to pursue your interests, ask your parents, brother, sister, or friends to help you.

6. Offer a trade. When you require some type of assistance to pursue your dreams, mention that you’d be happy to help out your neighbor, friend, or family member with a task they want done if they’re willing to assist you too.

> For example, you could say, “I’ll feed and walk your dog while you go on that get-away weekend if you can do something for me.”

> Using the barter system to complete tasks is a valuable tool of empowerment. You’ll recognize that you can practically accomplish whatever you want with the assistance of others as long as you can barter your own skills and energies.

7. Create a step-by-step process for how to reach your desired life. If you think concretely about what you’re required to accomplish on the road to the end result, it will lead you toward your goal. Check off the steps as you achieve them.

> Keeping with the example of wanting to move to New York City, what must you do first to eventually get there? Maybe your step one is researching the industry available there to determine if your job skills will transfer. Find out what they have to offer.

Taking action to achieve your dreams will bring feelings of strength and incredible anticipation. Imagine how it will feel to know that you’ve taken the bull by the horns and are heading toward the greatest adventure of your life. Living the life you want is the ultimate objective of self-empowerment. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

Be Willing to Work Hard

We’ve all encountered the person at work who goes so far above and beyond that they make everyone else look bad in comparison. Some of us may even admit that we wouldn’t mind being that co-worker that everyone else is praising and admiring.

Begin working harder by:

1. Showing up a few minutes early to work. Your workday may go better if you’re there ahead of time and ready to get started. Coming in early will help if you have a long walk from the parking lot to your office or you like to make the coffee and check your inbox first thing in the morning.

2. Getting adequate rest each night. If you want to put your heart and soul into your work, it’s important to be well-rested. The more energy you have, the more effort you can expend to get your job done well.

3. Developing real interest in your work. If today you’re catching up on the filing, ensure your mind is on putting all the records in order. Rather than seeing the job as an unimportant task that takes you from your “real work,” view filing as a necessary key to doing your job.

9 BUILDING BLOCKS OF PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT

> It’s no secret that it’s much easier to locate information and data when it’s alphabetized and neatly filed rather than in stacks of papers on a desk. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

> Put all your effort into each project you work on. When you show interest in something, the end product reflects it.

4. Competing with yourself. What if you were to look at tasks as a way of showing what you can do?

> For example, when both the filing bins are filled with files to be put away, how long will it take you to do it? Two hours? Forty-five minutes?

> Jot down your times in your calendar to see if you can beat your filing time today.

5. Nixing the complaints. Many of us may have complaints about what we do in a day. But it’s wise to recognize that while we’re complaining, we’re losing our momentum with work. During the time we’re complaining we could, instead, be accomplishing something.

> Reflect on what you can accomplish if you abolish voicing your disappointment with everything you’re not pleased about. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

6. Establishing set times for unsavory tasks. If filing is a task you typically find less-than-satisfying, perhaps setting up regular time blocks to do the job will help you keep up with it and get it done efficiently.

> For example, you could set up Tuesday mornings from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. and Friday afternoons, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. as filing time.

> Scheduling a task and accomplishing it regularly is the sign of a hard worker.

> Although the work may take some time to get done, you’ll complete it and do so consistently.

7. Pushing yourself. Just how efficient of a worker can you be? You have the personal power to become the type of employee you want to be. Pushing yourself to excel at work will boost your self-confidence and make you feel empowered.

When you’re willing to work hard, many positive things will happen for you. Your end results will be greater and others will come to see you as a model employee. Empower yourself with the abundance that comes with being a hard worker.

Do Something: Starting Small is Better Than Not Starting at All

If you’ve ever felt bogged down with everyday life, you’ll appreciate the beauty of starting small. Rather than not starting at all, beginning little-by-little seems like a much better option.

Start small on your journey to personal empowerment by:

1. Doing something even if you’re unsure. There once was a guy who said, “Let’s do something, even if it’s wrong.”

> The idea behind this statement is empowering because it implies that, even though you’re unsure about how to go about putting your dreams into action, you can try something that could eventually lead you toward your goal.

2. Pushing through the feelings of fear. It’s natural to feel afraid when you want to embark on a new adventure. You might be unnerved at the idea of moving in the direction of the life you’ve always dreamed about. Avoid letting fear hold you back.

3. Keeping promises you make to yourself. Even the smallest step forward can be a powerful indicator that what you promise yourself matters and that you believe in what you’re doing.

> Following through on your promises brings you one step closer to your goals. Building Blocks Personal Empowerment

True empowerment begins with thought, effort, and follow- through. Only you can refresh your existence and begin living a more empowered life.

Keep Moving Forward

As you start putting these suggestions into place, you’ll begin to gain the momentum to continue moving ahead. Momentum begets more momentum.

Keep moving forward in your efforts to build your personal empowerment by:

1. Maintaining your list and keeping it close. When you use paper-and-pen accountability to keep track of your goals for the day, week, and month, you’ll move ahead rapidly. Become the true designer of your life!

2. Planning blocks of time to focus on yourself. Whether it’s doing some research on the internet, reading a book on some aspect of your future, or devoting an hour writing a proposal for funding to start a non-profit organization, give yourself those moments.

> Spend time working on your initiative and you’ll travel towards a brighter future.

3. Showing consistent effort. Sometimes, we’re charged with simply putting one foot in front of the other in order to build up our strength. When we’re consistent, the direction we’re heading is more apparent to us. Our spirits soar when we see the progress we’re making.

You’ll encounter all kinds of individuals, situations, and stumbling blocks on your journey toward empowerment. At times, you may feel like you’ve taken two steps forward and three steps back. By continuing to move forward, you’ll make overall progress that can’t be denied.

Avoid Giving Away Your Power

Because we live our lives surrounded by others and dealing with complex events, there will be times when you’re inclined to give up your power. What does this mean? Some behaviors or attitudes you adopt can reduce your strength and momentum.

Ponder these points to intensify your personal power:

1. Refuse to pay attention to what others say about you. Being overly sensitive to the comments of others can steal your passion and stall your progress on the way to building personal empowerment.

2. Make your own decisions. It makes sense to listen to the opinions of those you trust and respect when you’re at a crossroads in life. However, you’ll ultimately be living with the choices you make. Therefore, it’s best for you to select whatever you want to do.

3. If you experience a personal crisis, stay in tune with yourself. For example, if you go through a break-up, acknowledge how you feel and then shift gears to refocus on what’s really important to you.

> When you take the stance, “I can’t have a happy life ever because this happened,” you’re giving up your power. Instead, pay attention to what occurred and make an effort to discover the lesson provided by the experience.

> When you learn something during a crisis, you gain knowledge, power, and personal resolve.

As you build your own power, be aware of how you can keep hold of your personal strength. In the end, you’ll come out on the other side feeling healthier, happier, and more empowered.

Conclusion

Although everyday life can be overwhelming, you have the resolve and tools to live an empowered life. An empowered existence allows you to make progress and eventually achieve all your goals and dreams.

Define who you are. As you empower yourself in ways that build your self-confidence, you’ll discover all the sources of your life’s greatest passions.

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How To Create Powerful Goals

How To Create Powerful Goals

Introduction

We often daydream about what we want to accomplish in life, but how often do we actually put together a plan for making these daydreams a reality?
Why are celebrities the only ones who appear to be living extraordinary lives? Each one of us is capable of creating a roadmap with mini- goals, which can help us achieve the greatness we deserve.
Those daydreams of ours are really life goals, and our dreams will differ from person to person. However, beware of simply setting goals without any real serious thought as to how you can achieve them!
Setting goals improperly can be disappointing. Why? Well, if you’re not clear and realistic about your goals, there’s little likelihood of you achieving them. Then your goals simply remain dreams.
There’s a powerful formula that you should keep in mind when setting goals for career, business and personal aspirations.
Creating power goals

The formula is called S.M.A.R.T. and it stands for:

S: Specific

M: Measurable

A: Attainable

R: Realistic

T: Timely

The more specific you make your goal, the more likely you’ll identify with it – and the more likely you’ll achieve it!
The more measurable your goal is, the more likely you’ll be able to measure your progress along the way. Measurements like the amount of weight lost, revenue earned, number of clients gained, or any specific number that you can tangibly count or assess with objective figures is a measurable goal.
Setting unattainable goals is an exercise in futility. When you set attainable goals you ensure that you have adequate resources and knowledge to achieve those goals.
Goals need to be set within specific timeframes. Without timeframes, there’s no sense of urgency, which can lead to procrastination and failure.
Realistic goals are harder to articulate than you might think. Sometimes the process of goal setting supports unrealistic goals, which can lead to disappointment, failure, and the loss of your time and resources. So be sure your goals are realistic for you, not someone else!

In the next few pages we’ll examine different kinds of goal setting that utilize the S.M.A.R.T. principles and support successful outcomes. How To Create Powerful Goals

Short Term Goals

Goals can be either short term or long term. A good life plan has both.
Short term goals serve as stepping stones that help to achieve long term goals.

These kinds of goals are “enabling” and here’s why: How To Create Powerful Goals

> Short term goals move your plan closer to your final, long term goals. They are like preliminary steps along the way to realizing an outcome.

For example, securing a down payment would be an important short term goal for someone with a long term plan of purchasing a home.

> You’ll be inspired to make further progress. Once a short term goal is realized, that success can help to inspire further efforts along the journey to your overall goals.

> For example, if you create a new product that is met with praise, you’ll be inspired to create another product, which will create additional revenue for your business.

Creating power goals

> Short term goals help to keep your efforts focused by serving as stepping stones across a stream of competing and distracting activities, occurrences and events.

For example, college course curricula are designed to keep students focused on working toward their major. Each course completion is a short term goal leading up to the ultimate goal of graduation

A long term goal becomes more realistic when you break it down into smaller parts, or a series of short term goals.
For instance, if you’re facing a large debt, you may be paralyzed by fear at the idea of paying off thousands of dollars in a single day. However, breaking it down into smaller monthly payments lets you see a light at the end of the tunnel with a final payoff date in the future.
Short term goals help ensure that you stick to the S.M.A.R.T. principle of having measurable goals.
If long term goals are truly measurable, the degree of success of short term goals can help to determine the success of long term goals. Short term goals can help you make adjustments and realign your objectives along the way if you need to.
Think of these short term goals as your life’s to do list. The more small goals you can check off your list, the harder you’ll want to work to check off the rest of your list. Some goals may be fun, others may be tedious, but they will all lead to your ultimate long term goal of improving your life.

Long term goals tend to be the major goals of any plan and are, as the name suggests, set out into the future or for the long term, typically 5-10 years in advance. How To Create Powerful Goals

It’s important to have long term goals because these are the ambitions that reflect the ultimate outcome you desire. Long term goals should articulate your purpose and passion, as well as the motivation for your plan.
For that reason, long term aspirations should follow the S.M.A.R.T. principles and be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely.
Some people have a difficult time making long term goals realistic and timely. Given that a long term goal is set to be realized in the future, there can be tendency to make it lofty and unrealistic without any specific actionable steps to get you there.
That’s why it’s important to put a significant amount of time into setting long term goals. Oftentimes the process of setting short term goals can help clarify your long term objectives.
For example, earlier we used the process of securing the funds for a down payment as a short term goal toward realizing the overall goal of purchasing a home.
If your short term goal is not achieved by your specified date, that would obviously change the timeline of your overall objective.

So let’s say your short term goal is to save $3,500 a month for 12 months in order to have enough for a down payment and buy a house in a year’s time. If that short term goals ends up being too aggressive, your overall goal may shift from 12 months away to 18 months away.

But without having short term, monthly goals to guide you, you’d never know if your long term objective is realistic and attainable. How To Create Powerful Goals

This example illustrates how important it is to have measurable goals. If you don’t have a specific date or number to work toward, then you can’t possibly know what actions you need to take to reach your goal!
When measurable indicators are used, you can look upon them as early warning signs to help keep you on target and give you room to make changes as necessary without abandoning your desired goal.
The same holds true for the example of earning a college degree. Sometimes there are setbacks in our short term goals – for example failing a course – but one setback should not derail your dreams.
Rather than drop out of school because of one failed class, simply revisit why you failed or ask if there’s an alternative course you can take. If you don’t want to adjust the date of your graduation, consider retaking the class during a summer break or an extra class during the regular semester.
Experiencing setbacks is inevitable because we’re human. But we have the knowledge and capability to adjust our timelines and continue on our path.
There’s no harm in changing the path you’re on, but there is harm in quitting altogether!
Creating power goals

Setting Dates

One of the most important S.M.A.R.T. principles used with setting goals is the principle of making goals “timely.”
Without deadlines, it’s easy to let other priorities steer you away from your goal. A current crisis, potential opportunities, and other everyday occurrences can contribute to something called “oversight.”

Oversight is when you forget about your goals and necessary tasks associated with them because you’re focused on other issues.

Short term and long term goals, along with their accompanying deadlines, help to keep your overall plan in view so you can stay on task.

Children have a favorite response when asked to do a task: “I’ll do it tomorrow.” As parents, we need to teach children how to do things in a timely manner so these unfinished tasks don’t add up to a mountain of a mess.

As adults with long term goals, we should know better than to put things off until tomorrow because sometimes “tomorrow” never comes.

Life gets in the way with kids activities, work responsibilities, unexpected bills… the list of life’s distractions could go on and on. These distractions cause us to lose sight of our goals and desires. How To Create Powerful Goals

Setting dates and deadlines for reaching your goals will thwart this oversight and will help prevent future regrets.

So as not to be overwhelmed, follow these simple steps:

1. Plan. Prepare a chronological list of all short term goals you need to reach in order to accomplish your long term objective.

2. Schedule. Grab a calendar and set dates for each short term goal.

3. Assess. Pick a day once each month to review your progress and to assess whether your dates are accurate.

4. Now get to work!

Creating power goals
Be realistic with your timelines to ensure that the short term or long term goals are attainable. On your assessment days, be honest with yourself about how much you’ve accomplished.
If you’ve fallen behind, allow yourself some extra time to accomplish each goal moving forward. If you’ve gotten ahead of the game, then pat yourself on the back and celebrate, just don’t allow yourself to get too complacent. You must keep your momentum strong and the internal fire roaring!

The key to this exercise is to move ahead with your plan instead of moving in the other direction. If your goals were neither attainable nor realistic, readjust and move on.

Schedule Time to Work on Goals

The process of setting goals takes time and self-reflection. Be sure you’re as informed as you can be about an issue or opportunity included in your goals. How To Create Powerful Goals

For example, if your goal is to increase your client base, find out things like:

> The competition – Who are your competitors? What size client base do your closest competitors have? How healthy is your industry at this time?

> How long did it take you to develop your current client base? How long do you estimate it would take you to increase your client base by 10%? 15%? 25%?

> Is your level of revenue meeting expectations according to your existing business plan? Are you meeting or exceeding your goals?

> How much would you like to increase your revenue by and how much would you need to increase your client base to achieve that revenue goal?

The questions listed above are the kinds of questions a business owner might ask as she sets goals for building up her client base.
Depending on your goals, your questions may differ, but the objective is the same – to provide you with the most comprehensive understanding of the issues and realities you want to address when setting new goals.
If necessary, schedule time in your calendar to ensure you have a chance to work on these goals. Whether it’s a little everyday or just one day a week, make this appointment with yourself and keep the appointment firm!

So often we get carried away with caring for others – our families or our clients – that we forget to allow time to care for ourselves and our life goals.

If you need to delegate some tasks in order to make time in your schedule, then do so. Hire an intern to help with business tasks or outsource some of your household chores so you can find the time to make your goals a reality.

Hire the kid next door to cut your grass or hire a cleaning person to clean for you every week or two. Hire a babysitter once a week to keep the kids occupied or be creative and barter babysitting time with another mother.

Don’t use lack of time as an excuse for not achieving your goals! How To Create Powerful Goals

Not every goal has to be about work or career either. If you want to give your home a facelift, that’s a valid goal towards improving your quality of life.
Follow the same steps for setting short term goals and dates. Make another list of any equipment or supplies you need for the home improvement project and schedule your work time on the calendar.
Reaching your goals takes time, and one of the greatest injustices you can do to your goal planning is to do it in a rush. Not only should your end dates be realistic, but allow yourself enough time to create your power goals and do whatever research is necessary so your to-do list is accurate and up to date.

Equip yourself with enough information and time to develop S.M.A.R.T. goals. How To Create Powerful Goals

Share Your Goals To Maintain Accountability

One of the best ways to ensure you follow through with your objective is to share your goals with your family, friends, or life coach, who is committed to helping you stay accountable to your goals.

Determine what you need from a support group – constant reminding, daily emails, weekly check-ins – and share your ideas with those who you think would support you the best. Be clear with what you need and want for support and ask if they would be willing to keep you accountable.

Here are some great ideas for getting help to maintain accountability:

1. Family and friends can be a tremendous support group who share a genuine interest in your success.

2. Joining an association in your field or profession is a great way to meet others who may be willing to help you be accountable to your goals. They may even ask you to do the same for them.

3. Hiring a professional life or business coach is another popular way to get the support necessary to stay on track and on target with your goals. These personal coaches work one-on-one with clients. You may have conversations once a week, once a day, or at any other intervals you determine.

A coach may be an added investment, but for many it’s an investment that can help you achieve tangible results that you never would have attained otherwise.

4. Blogging. Some people even start blogs to keep themselves accountable. For some, it’s easier to announce your goals to the internet world than to your family and friends.

This is not recommended for business planning, because you don’t want your competitors knowing what your plans are, but if journaling online helps keep you on track with personal goals, then do whatever will motivate you to reach those goals.

Watch Your Progress

The only way you’ll be able to achieve your short term or long term goals is if you’re keeping an eye on your progress.

It’s not enough to just set your goals. It’s also important to refer to your plan, do the work necessary, and assess your progress towards your goals every step of the way.

Keep your business or life plan close at hand on your desk or on a bulletin board and look at it regularly. Too many plans spend their lives hidden in files or piles, if they’re even written down at all!

Remember that your plan isn’t set in stone. Plans are meant to be fluid and change with time or as your interests change. These plans will help keep you on your chosen path to success.
When you reach a milestone, celebrate! Tell your family, friends, and accountability coach. Blog about it. Take special note of how good you feel knowing that your hard work is paying off and you’re one step closer to reaching your long term goal.

Refer to your goals regularly to mark your progress. Create a chart for each month that highlights the progress you’ve made on your goals and keep that chart visible at all times.

Goals don’t just happen by themselves; they need your attention and active participation as you follow your plan.

Summary

Goals are the beacons that remind us of our dreams and aspirations. If your goals aren’t specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely, your goals will have no meaning and you’ll have a difficult time achieving what you’re called to do!

Checklist for Creating and Realizing Your Goals:

> Remember to give yourself the time necessary to create goals according to the S.M.A.R.T. principles. Make sure you have all the information necessary before creating your goals so it’ll be realistic and attainable

> Incorporate short term goals into your long term goal-setting. Short term goals are like stepping stones along the way to your success. Short term tasks also encourage you to assess your plan along the way and adjust as needed.

> Keeping yourself accountable to your goals is critical. Share your goals with someone you trust, like a peer or coach.

> Actively monitor your progress towards your goals. Don’t keep your goals filed away. Keep them front and center so your actions and tasks will always be aligned with your goals.

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Live the Best Year of Your Life

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Live the Best Year of Your Life

You may have tried to change your life before without much success. However, with an effective process, it’s possible to achieve more in a single year than most manage to achieve in a lifetime.

> Most New Year’s resolutions are little more than wish lists with no chance of success. In fact, the average person forgets all about their resolution within a few weeks.

> Setting goals is a powerful process, but only if done correctly. There’s much more to be done than making a list of desires and then waiting passively for them to be delivered.

Your current life situation is a combination of several factors. Your beliefs, past, habits, expectations, and resources are all factors.

A spectacular life requires balance. Wealth isn’t a substitute for poor health. A great relationship isn’t a substitute for having insufficient financial resources.

Making the next year the best year of your life is within your control. But there are several requirements. You have to know what you want, develop habits that support your goals, drop the habits that don’t support your goals, deal with obstacles, and stay the course.

Review Your Past

Common wisdom suggests that you should keep looking forward and leave the past in your rearview mirror, but this can be a mistake. The past has much to reveal. At the very least, you can learn where you’ve made mistakes. This is important, because you’ve been making the same mistakes over your lifetime.

> The reason your last relationship ended is likely to be the same reason your next relationship will end.

> Financial challenges repeat themselves.

> Your past challenges with work will be your future challenges at work.

> Your diet and exercise plans will fail for the same reasons they’ve failed in the past.

Failing to examine and address the challenges of the past is choosing to repeat your challenges and failures throughout the rest of your life.

The past also includes some pretty great things. Failing to identify these things is an obstacle to enjoying similar success in the future.

While answering the following questions, consider all areas of your life:

> Physical/health

> Finances

> Relationships

> Work

> Hobbies

> Spiritual/religious activities

> Family

Reviewing the past is a critical component of creating the future:

1. What were the highlights from last year? Create a list of at least five positive experiences from the last year. Go with your gut. Anything that fills you with positive emotions can be a highlight. It might have been something as simple as spending a perfect afternoon at the park with your child.

> Avoid relying on society’s values when defining your own success. It’s a success if it feels like a success. That may or may not align with conventional measures of success. Decide for yourself.

2. What were the low points and how could they have been avoided? It wasn’t all good. There had to be a few days or experiences you don’t want to repeat. Make a list of them and consider how these experiences could have been avoided. Minimizing the low-points in life is as crucial to your happiness as adding high points.

> Should you have been able to foresee the occurrence of these experiences?

> How can you prevent a future reoccurrence?

3. What were the best decisions you made over the last year? You undoubtedly made some shrewd decisions last year. What were they? How can you apply this information in the future?

4. What were the worst decision from the last year? Everyone makes mistakes. What were yours? When you look even further into the past, have you made similar bad decisions? Why?

5. What are five positive habits you’d like to add this year? Consider the long-reaching characteristics of habits. What are a few habits you can add that will make a big difference over the long haul?

> Diet, exercise, financial, and relationship habits can alter your future considerably.

6. What are five habits you’d like to eliminate this year? Bad habits can ruin your life. Which of your negative habits would enhance your life the most if you were able to eliminate them.

7. What are the most important relationships in your life and why? We’re all limited by our personal resources. Good relationships require time and mental effort. It only makes sense to spend those resources on the most important relationships. Also think about past relationships you’d like to renew.

> It’s also useful to determine why those relationships are important. Why do you receive from these relationships that makes them important?

8. Which relationships should you consider ending or minimizing? Just as you’ve accumulated possessions that now clutter your life, you have relationships that need decluttering, too.

> Consider all of your relationships, personal and professional. Which of these no longer serve you?

> Relationships are never static. It’s common for a relationship to change significantly over time.

Are you aware of your past? Take advantage of your past experiences. Examine your past and apply that information to the future. You’ll find that it’s common to make the same mistakes over and over. End the cycle by thoroughly reviewing your past.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Unless you’ve intentionally put your life in balance, it’s dost likely unbalanced. Having balance among the various parts of your life is necessary for happiness and well-rounded success. Focus on the areas of your life that you would consider low-rated.

If your life is out of balance, you could:

> Be financially successful at the expense of your social life.

> Be successful at your career at the expense of your relationships.

> Be successful at your spiritual interests at the expense of your career.

Without balance, you’ll be suffering in at least one aspect of your life.

This can be tricky. We live in a society that worships those that have accomplished amazing things, often at great expense. While it’s easy to admire these people, many of them are very unhappy. By giving too much attention to any single area of your life, other parts of your life will suffer.

Before deciding that you’d like to a billionaire with a private jet and a set of 6-pack abs, determine the type of lifestyle you’d like to live. Your goals should support the life you’d like to live. Think about a perfect workday, weekend, and holiday. Ideally, your goals will help to make those a reality.

Determine the lifestyle you’d like to live:

1. How do you want to make money? With few exceptions, every adult needs to earn money to survive. The ways of earning money are only limited by your imagination.

> Do you want to make money by being altruistic?

> Do you want a corporate career?

> Do you want to be creative?

> Be a doctor? Astronaut? Real estate investor? Consultant?

> Work with children?

> Work with animals?

2. What working conditions do you prefer? Some people like to work in an office setting. Others like to work at home.

> Day/night?

> With others or alone?

> Required attire?

> Weekends?

> What time do you want to be home each evening?

> Are you willing to travel? Do you want to travel?

> Do you need your own office or is a loft-type setting preferable?

3. How are your finances? You don’t need a 7-figure salary to be happy, but it’s also not easy to be happy with a 4-figure salary. Are you able to maintain your budget? Do you even have a budget? How much debt do you have? Is your income acceptable? Is your money invested wisely for your situation? Will you be able to retire at a reasonable age?

4. Intimate relationships are important. Do you want to be married or single? Play the field or keep things monogamous? What do you need from a romantic partner? Consider the following characteristics a potential romantic partner might have:

> Attractiveness

> Career

> Available free time

> Sense of humor

> Supportiveness

> Tolerance

> Health

> Intelligence

> Kindness

> Interest in having children

> If you currently have a relationship, what is missing? What could be better? Are you satisfied with the relationship as it is?

5. Your free time affects your happiness and satisfaction. How much free time do you have each week? How much of it do you spend with your family? How much time do you spend on hobbies or with friends? How much time do you dedicate to spiritual activities and development?

6. Avoid underestimating the value of good health. Is your diet acceptable? Are you getting enough sleep? Enough exercise? Do you visit your doctor regularly? How is your current health? What do you want to change?

7. Spirituality. Do you meditate or pray regularly? Are you living life according to your beliefs? Are you aware of your beliefs? Do you regularly study spiritual materials?

8. How is your social life? Do you get out of the house as much as you’d like and spend time with people outside of your immediate family? How many friends do you have? How many would you like to have?

If you’re aware of your desired lifestyle, choosing goals becomes easy. Give this careful consideration. There’s no reason to have a goal of being worth $500 million if your ideal lifestyle only requires $2 million. Start with the end in mind and go from there.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Set Goals That Increase the Level of Balance in Your Life

After assessing your life, you should have a good idea of where your weaknesses lie. Time is a limited resource, so ensure that you’re spending it on the areas of your life that will provide the greatest returns. Seek balance and contentment will follow.

You can have multiple goals covering several areas of your life, but divvy up your time intelligently.

Find balance by choosing your goals intelligently:

1. Create one goal for each area of your life. You can create your own categories, but limit the number to 6-8. Set bigger goals in the areas of your life that are lagging or are the most disagreeable to you.

> It’s not a bad idea to rate each part of your life on a 1-10 scale. Set smaller goals in the higher-rated areas and more significant goals in the lower-rated areas.

> Choose goals that can be achieved within 12 months and are measurable. Being “healthy” isn’t a suitable goal. “Weigh 150 lbs. or less” is suitable.

> Be bold. You can accomplish much more in a year than you currently believe.

2. Determine habits that will support each goal. While we enjoy the stories of those that are successful, the truth is that path to success is quite boring. Losing 50 pounds is exciting, but 300 days of eating well, exercising, and avoiding snacks isn’t that thrilling. But that’s exactly what success is: performing effective habits over an extended period of time.

> Make a list of at least 10 habits that will ensure your success.

> Now choose the three habits that will make the biggest difference. Forget about the rest.

3. Determine the old habits you need to drop. Habits can make your goals easier or more challenging to achieve. Identify your current habits that are obstacles to your success.

> Those habits might be direct obstacles, such as wasting money or eating too much chocolate. Others can be subtler, such as procrastinating, wasting time, or having a negative attitude.

Excess and happiness aren’t well correlated. A balanced life is enjoyable and minimizes the low spots. Having enough money, love, friends, and health is preferable to having an excess in three of them and a lack in the other. Create a solid foundation before attempting to achieve something outrageous.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Gather Your Resources

For most goals, you’re going to need more than just yourself with your current level of knowledge and expertise. You’ll often require other people, advice, education, and new skills. The internet makes it much easier to find the people and other resources you require.

Get the help you need:

1. Determine what you need to learn. Do you already know everything you need to know in order to be successful? Most importantly, do you know enough to get started? What do you need to learn to take the first step? Remember all the potential resources available to you.

> Internet

> Books

> Online courses

> Local educational facilities

> Clubs

> Audio programs

> YouTube and other videos

> People

2. A mentor can be the most valuable resource. Imagine having access to someone that’s accomplished what you’re trying to accomplish. Unless your goal is highly unusual, someone else has already done it. Seek out these people and ask for assistance.

> You’ve probably had a golf coach, piano teacher, or other type of mentor in the past. It makes sense to have a coach for losing weight or launching an online business, too.

3. Time. Do you have the necessary time available? Some goals don’t require any more time than you’re already spending. Sticking to a budget might actually save time since you won’t be out spending money as much.

> However, most goals require time. Unless you currently have free time to spare, you’ll have to steal time from other activities. Surfing the internet, playing on your phone, and watching TV are the most common time-wasters. You may have to drop some more meaningful activities, too.

> If you can’t make the time for your goals, you might need more inspiring goals.

4. Other resources. If you’re going to be a guitar player, you’ll need a guitar. Do you have everything you need? Computer? Soccer ball? 3-piece suit? Office space? Reliable transportation? Business cards? The ability to cook healthy meals? Ensure you have everything you require.

> You many need financial resources to meet many of your goals. If that’s true, one of your goals might need to be financial in nature.

There are few things you can do completely on your own. You’re likely to need new information, skills, advice, or money to achieve your goals. Identify the key resources you will need and acquire them. Avoid underestimating the value of a great mentor.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Identify Potential Obstacles

Without any obstacles, achieving your goals and living the best year of your life would be easy. All you’d have to do is make a few decisions. But it’s not that easy. Life is full of obstacles that will derail your efforts if you’re not prepared. Unsuccessful people are easily dissuaded by obstacles.

Identify the obstacles that can stand in your way:

1. People. Interestingly, the people in your life can be the biggest obstacles you’ll face. There are very few people in your life that will be 100% supportive of your efforts. The remainder can directly or indirectly sabotage your efforts.

> Some people will try to help, but do the opposite. Some of the people in your life will have the best of intentions, but hinder your efforts. They may caution you to be realistic or remind you of past failures.

> Your overweight spouse might be threatened by your efforts to lose weight.

> Your brother might be upset if you make more money than he does.

> Keep your eyes open and pay attention. Most people want to see you do well, just not better than they’re doing themselves.

2. You. We all sabotage ourselves on a regular basis. We do so with our thoughts, habits, beliefs, and fears.

> It’s easy to determine if you’re getting in your own way. When you think about your goal, do you feel anything other than excited and enthusiastic? If so, you’re in danger of being your own worst enemy.

> Monitor yourself daily by reviewing your goals and noticing your emotional response. Any negative feelings about achieving your goal must be managed if you want to be successful.

> Your beliefs about yourself can be highly limiting. For example, the belief, “I’m bad with money” will be an obstacle to financial success. If you identify with being a shy person, your social life will have challenges.

3. Momentum. It’s tough to get started. It’s even a law of physics. It takes more energy to get something moving that it takes to keep it moving. Expect resistance early in the process of making changes to your life.

4. Randomness. Life itself presents obstacles. You can argue whether the universe is challenging you or if it’s simply bad luck. However, there’s no disputing that random things will get in the way during your pursuit of your best year ever!

Anticipate the things that can go wrong. Be prepared for the most likely obstacles. Expect resistance while you’re changing your life. Things won’t go smoothly 100% of the time. Get started and strive for consistent progress.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Do you Have What it Takes?

Attaining your goals isn’t just about having goals and doing the right things. That will work in the short-term, but you won’t have lasting success. It’s necessary to become successful in the areas addressed by your goals. You can’t just change your behavior and expect long- lasting results.

If your goal is to become a millionaire, you must become a person that has the characteristics of a millionaire. It’s necessary to have the belief system of a millionaire and the thought process of a millionaire. You have to be the type of person that takes intelligent risks and manages money well.

Cultivate the attributes that guarantee you’ll achieve your goals:

1. Make a list of attributes that support the achievement of your goals. Take each goal individually and consider the type of person that would achieve that goal. What do you need to become?

> More cautious or less?

> More self-esteem?

> A different attitude?

> A new set of beliefs?

> More outgoing?

> More health-conscious?

> More active?

> More proactive?

2. Create a plan for developing these characteristics. Find the resources you need to become a new version of yourself. Then apply those resources each day to make the necessary changes. When you change yourself, everything in your life will change, too.

> Some people allow their ego to get in the way and declare, “I’m fine just the way I am. I shouldn’t have to change.” You are fine the way you are – if you’re happy with your life! But taking your health more seriously, going back to school, or learning to speak French doesn’t fundamentally change who you are.

> Be brave enough to discover what you’re capable of.

3. Visualize the person you want to become. Once you can believe it, everything else will fall into place. Start convincing yourself that you have the new mindset and attributes by visualizing yourself with them.

Become the person you need to be. It’s important to be open to the idea of changing yourself and not just your behavior. When you change yourself, everything around you changes, too.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Putting It All Together

You now have all the parts necessary to create a comprehensive plan. Let’s use an example of someone that wants to lose 50 pounds in the next 12 months in a healthy manner. We’ll consider everything we’ve discussed up to this point.

Matt is single, 35 years of age, 250 lbs., and 6 feet tall.

Review the Past

> Matt was a healthy weight until he graduated from college. He then gained a few pounds each year until reaching his present condition.

> He has a history of making poor food choices. In his younger days, these poor choices didn’t affect his weight.

> Matt eats when he’s bored or stressed. It’s his primary coping mechanism. As a result, he keeps a lot of unhealthy comfort food in the house.

> Matt doesn’t mind exercise, but getting out of the house is a challenge for him. He has good intentions, but can’t seem to make it out the door for the drive to the gym.

> Matt views himself as the “funny, chubby guy that everyone likes.”

> Matt knows he’s an all-or-nothing kind of guy. There’s no middle ground. His past attempts at diet and exercise have been extreme, leaving him extremely hungry, sore, and ultimately injured. These attempts have failed spectacularly.

Gather Resources

Matt doesn’t have everything he needs right out of the gate. The world is full of resources, many of them free. Ensure that you have the resources you need to be successful.

1. What does Matt need to learn? Matt remembers the food pyramid from high school, but her realizes that was a while ago. He knows he needs to update his knowledge regarding healthy food choices.

> He also needs to brush up on his knowledge regarding getting into shape. He was a high-school athlete, but he’s not sure how to get into shape from his current starting point.

> Matt knows he needs to learn how to control his impulses regarding his eating habits. He believes that finding other ways to deal with his boredom and stress will make sticking to a healthy eating plan much easier.

2. Matt finds his resources. Matt searches Amazon.com for a few books regarding health, weight loss, exercise, and self-discipline. He chooses a few Kindle books for each topic. Kindle books are less expensive and easy to return if he doesn’t like a book.

> He also finds a few blogs that seem to mirror his situation. The authors started in the same place as Matt and have managed to create the results that Matt desires.

> Matt has a friend that would also like to lose weight. They’ve agreed to hold each other accountable and exercise together.

3. Find a mentor. Matt contacts the blog authors and asks if any of them would like to serve as his mentor. One of them responded positively. Matt also knows a coworker that successfully lost a lot of weight several years ago.

4. Time and other resources. Fortunately, Matt has plenty of time to adopt an exercise plan. He has all the basic resources he needs, but lacks financial resources. A gym membership and fancy food probably aren’t options.

Related Habits

Matt has several bad habits that stand in his way:

1. Poor coping skills. He doesn’t do drugs or drink, but he uses food as an emotional crutch.

2. Unhealthy snacking. Matt eats a large percentage of his calories after dinner while watching TV.

3. High calorie beverages. This is one habit that really makes it difficult to lose weight. Non-calorie drinks take up the same amount of physical space. It’s easy to drink a lot of calories.

4. Little self-discipline. Even the smallest of obstacles can derail Matt’s efforts.

Eliminating these bad habits will be half the battle. In fact, Matt can probably come close to reaching his goal just by eliminating these habits. Dealing with your bad habits may have similar benefits.

It would serve Matt well if he were to develop a few new habits:

1. Coping skills. Matt develops a few ideas for dealing with his anxiety and boredom. When he’s faced with emotional eating, Matt has decided to:

> Meditate for 15 minutes.

> If that doesn’t work, he will then take a 15-minute walk.

> Matt will then call a friend or his accountability partner.

> Matt also decides to take up a hobby to occupy his mind and his time while he’s home alone.

2. Avoid eating after dinner. He knows this will be challenging, but his new coping skills will help. He’s also decided to add fiber to his evening meal to keep himself feeling full. A few glasses of water will help, too.

3. Replacing high-calorie drinks with water or other non-caloric drinks. He knows this will make a huge difference. He realizes that he might not have to cut his food intake very much if he can eliminate calories from his beverages.

4. Research self-discipline issues. He decides to do one thing each day that he doesn’t feel like doing. He knows he needs to learn how to ignore his negative feelings and take action any way. The books have a detailed program for increasing his self-discipline and Matt schedules this activity into his life.

5. Make exercise a daily habit. Exercise will help with his hunger and speed his progress.

6. Make wiser food choices. Matt decides to implement a new decision process at meal times. He will now ask himself a series of questions:

> Am I actually hungry? If not, he will use his new coping strategies.

> Will this food take me further or closer to my weight-loss goal?

> Matt will also avoid purchasing any unhealthy foods. He knows that if it’s in the house, it will eventually be eaten.

7. Review his goal and his progress each day. Matt revisits his goal in the morning and the evening. He also weighs himself each day. He knows that his weight can fluctuate from day to day, so he takes the average weight for the week to track his progress.

It’s okay to start slowly. A few smaller changes can provide sufficient results in the early stages.

Potential Obstacles

Matt identifies his potential obstacles:

1. Matt’s mom. Matt lives close to his mom, whom has always encouraged him to eat. His mom thinks men should be well-fed and look that way. He knows that she will start nagging him as soon as he loses 10 pounds.

> Matt knows he needs to grow up and stop worrying about his mother’s opinion. He pays for one hour of counseling and receives several tips for dealing with her effectively while preserving the relationship.

2. His finances. Matt doesn’t have a lot of money to spend on losing weight, but realizes that he will be spending less money on food and beverages. He’s confident he can overcome this obstacle without any problems.

3. His friends. Matt’s friends love to go out and eat cheeseburgers, chicken wings, and other traditional pub food. His friends will give him some good- natured ribbing and tempt him with his favorite foods.

> Matt knows that his friends eat first, and then spend time talking. He decides to eat at home, show up late, and then order a diet soda. He can still spend time with his friends socializing while avoiding temptation.

Personal Attributes

Matt creates a list of personal attributes that will facilitate reaching his goal:

1. Patience. Losing 50 pounds will take time. To reach his goal in a year, he must average one pound of weight loss per week.

2. Persistence. While the work won’t be too difficult, the changes won’t be enjoyable in the beginning. Persistence will be an important quality.

3. Having an emphasis on health, diet, and exercise. People that are lean, fit, and healthy emphasize these things. When making decisions, these items are always in the back of their minds.

Overall Plan

Matt knows that losing one pound each week should be easy, especially for someone of his weight. Only small changes are required to meet his one-pound per week goal. He doesn’t need to make any drastic changes.

For example, cutting out a couple of sugared drinks each day and taking a leisurely 15-minute walk each night would be sufficient to lose a pound each week for the next several weeks. When those changes stop working, it’s time to add another change or two. Small habit changes can be enough to make continuous progress. Avoid believing that painful change is required.

With enough patience and persistence, even large goals can be achieved comfortably.

Live the Best Year of Your Life

Conclusion

There’s a lot to do to create the best year of your life. But none of it is particularly challenging. Determine the lifestyle that would appeal to you most. This is the starting point. Then look to your past for clues about yourself and your mistakes. What do you do well? Where do you have challenges? What are the changes you need to make?

Gather the necessary resources and make small changes to your habits. Evaluate your progress and go from there. Remain aware that you’ll need to make some personal changes. Your current collection of attitudes, beliefs, and knowledge have led to your current situation. You must change yourself to seek lasting change in your life.

Live your best year ever! Get started today.

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