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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Believe in Yourself!!! - Meredith Pollock

Today I want to talk about believing in yourself. There are so many people out there that have either given up or are seriously doubting themselves. Why does this happen?

Personally I think this is because we are with ourselves 24/7 non stop and we allow other people to influence our thinking. They’ll either tell you that your dreams are just that – dreams, or that you are wishing for the impossible or someone will tell you that you can’t lose weight or that you’re stupid etc. Then what you do is take them at their word and long after they’ve already forgotten what they said, you are still telling yourself that because they said it. You dwell on what they said because it may have hurt your feelings and now your inner dialogue keeps telling you that. I know this because I am guilty of doing it as well. But there is hope.

When someone for example tells you that you’re stupid just tell yourself that even though what you might have said or done was a little stupid, that doesn’t make you stupid. Say to yourself “so what I made a mistake I’m human, but I’m intelligent enough not to let what they say affect my life”, or if they tell you that your dreams are impossible or just wishful thinking, tell yourself “My dreams may be impossible or just wishful thinking for them, but they are my dreams, not theirs and my dreams are real” etc. You’ve got to learn to turn those negative comments or statements around to suit you.

Now I’m not saying it is easy and that it will happen overnight BUT if you continue to do it before you know it, you will no longer be allowing others or yourself to break you down. You will start to gain strength and confidence that will help you to believe in yourself once again. When it comes to your dreams and goals DON’T allow other people to steal them away from you.

When you hear those negative thoughts creeping in, confront them. Now if you are alone you can always speak to them as if you were speaking to someone standing in front of you, if you not alone I suggest you do it in your mind otherwise the people around you might just think you slightly crazy and ready for the loony-bin, which is definitely not the case.

Another point worth remembering is that many, many of our beliefs that we have about ourselves stem right back to childhood. When people or grown ups told you things, you didn’t know any better other than to take their word for it and this wasn’t their fault either as many of their beliefs came from their parents and their parents etc etc. But now as an adult (or young adult) you know better, you know you have the choice to believe what feels right and to toss the rest.

In order for you to believe in yourself again you have to let go of the negative things you tell yourself or hear from others. As Dr Phil so often asks “How’s it working for you?”. If it’s not working for you, you need to get rid of it, let it go. But at the same time you need to be building yourself up, speaking positive.

When you love or care about someone else you talk to them with respect, love and encouragement, that is how you need to talk to yourself. Tell yourself good things that you would say to others, hell even if you have to go and stand in front of the mirror and pretend that your reflection is the other person you love and adore, then do it. It may seem totally weird at first but as they say “Fake it till you make it”. Just do it, find ways that will work for you.

What works for me, may not work for you, so experiment, play with it and start to have fun with it. And in time you will start to feel good about yourself, your dreams and goals etc and best of all you will start to believe in yourself again. Just remember treat yourself like you would an honored guest in your house and that shift in your self-belief will happen!!!!! Believe it and believe in you!!!!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Does Your Ex Want You Back Or Are You Refusing to Accept Reality? By Christine Akiteng

Refusing to accept reality or optimistic denial is so common that sometimes men and woman who are trying to get their ex back come across as unreasonable in their thoughts and attitudes -- even acting like their ex owes them something.

Even when they intellectually understand that they are broken up, they find it really hard to accept -- and even feel confused - that someone who once loved them is now acting like a different person. This provokes intense emotional anguish:

-- "Why is he doing this to me?"

-- "So why does she want to talk to me now?"

-- "Why did she say she's never been happier with anyone else, but then dumps me?"

-- "Why does he say he loves me but doesn't want a relationship?"

-- "How could he move on so quickly? Didn't our relationship mean anything?"

Often times denial is simply a case of not wanting to look at the real problem...

As they try to cope with overwhelming feelings of rejection, uncertainty and unpredictability, some people look for diversions or distractions that help them deal with the unacceptable reality.

This is what I call the "escapist's trap"; a subtle but dangerous game in which the mind creatively rearranges information, distorts situational cues, and misinterprets the meanings of certain messages, all in a clumsy attempt to avoid addressing the real problem(s) and avoid personal responsibility. Quite often the mind engages in this dangerous game because there is part of the unacceptable reality that the person doesn't want to admit to (even to him or herself), so he or she tries to place the blame for the unacceptable reality on someone or something else.

A few examples of "escapist's traps" include:

-- My ex is damaged and needs therapy;

-- My ex has commitment issues/ phobia;

-- My ex is very stubborn, nothing will work;

-- I think s/he is testing me;

-- My plate is full at the moment;

-- Everybody says I am wasting my time;

-- If only X would happen, everything would be fine!

These statements work as perceptual filters placed over reality only allowing in selective information that puts the blame for the unacceptable reality on someone or something else. Even when empirical evidence suggests otherwise, the person finds ways to repress, minimize, misdirect, reinterpret or explain away information that does not filter through his or her perceptual filters.

Denial gives you the excuse to keep going unchanged because facing reality is too painful...
For example your ex might say:

--"I felt like something was missing", but what you hear is "I have problems with commitment";

-- "You're needy, clingy and controlling" but what you hear is "I am not good enough for a very loving person like you";

-- "You're too nice" but what you hear is "I am addicted to bad boys" ;

-- "I need space to figure out things for myself" but what you hear is "It's over!"

-- "I do not know about us" but what you hear is "You're wasting your time, nothing will work."

This is perhaps not so surprising given the fact people who tend to creatively rearrange information, distort situational cues, and misinterpret the meanings of certain messages to create a contrived reality, are risk and pain averse in the first place. They are so consumed with trying to avoid negative consequences and undesirable outcomes, to the point that they may not have even seen the breakup coming because they saw what they wanted to see or heard what they want to hear and didn't want to know, hear or see anything else that threatened their contrived view of reality. Now that the relationship has ended, the entire focus of their energy, effort and time is another contrived reality.

-- "I don't think she's happy without me"

-- "I think he misses me"

-- "I think she wants me contact to her"

-- "I think he wants to call me but is afraid I might not pick up the phone"

-- "Its the other man/woman controlling him/her"

And its not like the person is willfully lying. Its just that their reality becomes distorted, as they convince themselves about what is really going on.

A contrived reality has you working backwards instead of moving forward...

Instead of taking the necessary steps that will turn things around

-- like being less needy or controlling, stop trying too hard to please, become more interesting
and exciting, and all the other things may be making you less attractive, you are obsessed with getting your ex to go to therapy when he doesn't really need it; or you're trying to help an ex overcome commitment phobia when the reality is that she doesn't want to spend the rest of her life with you because you're missing some of the qualities she's looking for in a guy; or you're doing no contact to try to make your ex miss you but only end up creating an even wider distance between the two of you. What a waste of energy, effort and time!

Escape from reality coupled with the feeling that you cant do anything at all puts you in a passive and dependent role

-- a victim to whom things are done. You find yourself feeling like you lack the emotional and psychological resources necessary to deal with trying to get your ex back; spending a lot of our time deciding what to do; and constantly trying to stay positive and hopeful.

Denial wont stop the reality from being real...

And even if your ex needed therapy or has commitment issues or phobia, a contrived view of reality creates a poor or very false sense of understanding of the complexity and scale of problem you pretend to address or handle. Trying to simplify the problem in order to lower exposure to threat and risk confuses the mind further making any attempts at attracting an ex back much more difficult.

It is important to understand that the escapist trap or use of escapist strategies, on most part, is not a deliberate attempt to distort information or sabotage the chances of attracting back an ex back, but a rather a reaction to the complexity of uncertainty and the need to deny personal responsibility. Sometimes, people who use escape strategies to try to attract their ex back are not even aware of their real agendas, but present the problem, often with perfect integrity, as the way they see it.

Refusing to accept reality or optimistic denial is a trap you must free yourself from...

If you are to succeed in attracting your ex back, it is imperative that you move beyond this denial as soon as possible. Your ex may even want you back, but the escapist strategies you're using make it hard to attract your ex back. And you wonder why nothing is working!

About Author: Internationally renowned Dating & Relationships Coach, Christine Akiteng has devoted years of her life re-uniting couples and has seen over and over again first hand what works. She has woven together solid-gold advice on just about every stage of getting back together with your ex to help you make the process less scary and shaky and more exciting and smooth as possible.

Christine AkitengLevel: PlatinumA zealous and inspirational figure with a captivating energy that pulls people to her, Internationally renowned Sexual Confidence/Dating Coach, Christine Akiteng is a dazzling icon ... ...

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Does an Ex Ruin Your Life Or Open Opportunities For a New Start? By Colin Martin

Only you know for sure, but it does take some time for you to figure this one out. In the days and months following a bad break up, it seems as if your ex is doing everything they can to ruin your life. And you are extra sensitive to all the little things that can push your buttons.

After all, who knows you better than your ex? They swore an everlasting love to you, and suddenly they are your worst enemy. Nothing really hurts more than a trust betrayed. But you know deep down in your heart that you can get through this. The doors to start a new life will swing wide open.

You really have no choice than to start anew.

The time the two of you spent together will now have to be filled with activities of your choosing.

Half-heartedly you will look for "something to fill the time" take your mind off of the pain.

But these activities are the start of your new life. You have the freedom to do anything you now want to do. There will be no more asking for permission, no judgments or having to explain to anyone what you want to do or where you want to go. You can afford to take risks, find your niche in life and follow your dreams. There will be no more "That's stupid", "I don't understand why you would want to do that" or the ever popular "who's going to take care of the house?"

The biggest reason why couples fight is over money. But the biggest reason couples divorce is over one or the other partner losing their identity.

Having the freedom to do the things you want in life will be what matters most at the end of your life. Too many people say "I wish I had done (fill in the blank), but now it's too late."

Couples that support and encourage each other to find activities, together and apart, will be the ones that stay together.

Your new post break up activities will be the creation of your new life.

In your attempts to find peace, you are unwittingly creating the new you. A wiser you. A more fulfilled you. A freer you! No one can ruin your life but you. Giving someone else that power is not "freedom." You are in control even if it doesn't seem like it sometimes. Whether or not you realize it, your soul is healing itself every moment. Your new life has already begun.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Do This Before You Pursue a Relationship By Deb Allen

Even as children most of us dream about what our life partner will be like. Some of focus on the appearance of our mate and others focus more on the personality of that special person. The truth is that almost everyone of us will feel that we are in love at some point in our lifetime. Being in love does not guarantee our happiness, but being in love with a compatible person might. That is why there are a few steps to take before pursuing a relationship in order to ensure that it will be a great one.

The steps are easy but they can be time-consuming. The reason is that you should give careful consideration to each step. Okay, please see the list below:

1) Get to know yourself

2) Consider your dreams, goals and plans

3) Decide what, if anything, you are willing to compromise on

4) If children are in your plans determine a parenting style you are comfortable with

5) Consider your budgeting style, are you a spender or a saver

When I listed 'get to know yourself' as step one I thought many people might misunderstand.

You see, this is really the most time-consuming step for most people. In order to know yourself you will need to carefully analyze what is important to you. After completing this step you will be able to tell anyone your basic thoughts about the fundamentals of life.

I suggest that you begin with your values, faith, and ethics. I always find it helpful to make lists on paper (or a computer screen) so I can look over it. But if you prefer making the list in your head that is fine. The purpose of defining these things for yourself is so that you can decide just how important they are to you. For instance, if you are a very religious person you may plan to raise your children with that same religion. Consider how you would feel if your partner has a different religion and wants to raise the children with those beliefs.

You most likely have some plans for your future. I think we all do. The point in this step is so that you become clearer on your goals and you can more easily determine how important they are to you.

Step three is reviewing your lists from step one and two in order to determine if you are willing to compromise on any of those issues. An example might be if you meet your partner and he or she feels that their goals are more beneficial to the relationship so you are asked to assist in helping them reach their goals while yours are put on hold or forgotten.

Raising children often results in disagreements between the parents. One may have a more liberal style of parenting while the other is very strict and authoritative. Consider how that could be handled. Ideally this is something that would be discussed early in a relationship in order to avoid disputes later.

And the last step I have listed is determining your budgeting style. Some of us are spenders and some of us are savers. Arguments over money are common in relationships. Sometimes having a spender and a saver in the couple is the ideal mix. They tend to smooth the edges of one another. But if you have been on your own for awhile it may be hard to switch styles. Decide how you would handle such a situation if your partner wanted money matters handled differently than you do.

By assessing yourself before you even begin a relationship you will be better equipped to make an intelligent decision about the viability of the partnership. Some relationships may be better left as a friendship than to be pursued as a lifetime partnership.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Conversation starters

There is nothing worse when meeting someone for the first time then that awkward silence after greeting each other.

Kick the silence into orbit with these conversation starters.

How was your day?

You look really nice, where did you get (item in question)?

How was work?

If you are in their home comment on an ornament or a piece of furniture.

Have you seen any movies recently? How did you like it/them?

What kind of music do you listen to?

Ask if they saw a interesting TV program.What sports do you play or like? How long have you played for?

What did you do this weekend (week)?

Have you been to (a local restaurant)?

What kind of foods do you like?

Where are you from?

Where did you go to school/college?

Have you read any good books lately? Was it interesting?

What do you normally do for fun?

Do you like (an interest of yours)?

These will get the conversation going and you will find out what the other is interested in. Then you'll know if you have anything in common.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Character is Who We Are When No One is Watching By Fred Nicklaus

I remember a conversation that I had a while ago with a person who was talking to me about a chance that he would have to make some extra dollars and possibly take over part or all of the ownership of a company. Sounded like a pretty good deal at first, but then the person went on to tell me that he was not happy with the opportunity for extra dollars but wanted to move on the ownership of the company. In order to do that, he was willing to do some underhanded things in order for him to achieve his goals. I thought

The aforementioned person never achieved his goal and is it any wonder? Isn't it true that the way of the universe is most often that we never get things if we don't really deserve them. It almost never happens with proper joy or reward if a person is willing to use underhanded means in an effort to get what they want.

It's interesting that this theme of Character is something that I come across on a regular basis. I was at my weekly bible study and we talked about the Character theme among the group of men that I meet with. Character, it really is at the center of our relationships with family, friends, and everyday acquaintances. Any contact that we have will always be more fruitful and more fulfilling if we allow our Character to come to the front and be ourselves.

I believe that everyone knows the importance of acting the way you act at all times, no matter who the audience is that you might be in contact with. Are you the same you in all situations or do you have different yous that come to the front depending upon the situation that you are in or the people your around whether your acting a certain way might benefit you depending upon the you that you display?

I believe that it's all fairly simple. Decide who you are and let people know who that is by the way that you act in all situations. I hope that we all decide to be honest, fair, humble, willing to learn, and willing to help others. I believe that these are some reasonable character traits that can lead to a successful and happy life.

Be true in all your actions,

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Can't See the Forest From the Trees By Blanca Stella Mejia

I always pondered on this saying and don't think I really understood what it meant until today where I fully experienced this through a situation that presented itself for me as a perfect learning opportunity.

I was driving looking for an address."I think I know where I am going," my sister calls me on the cell phone. Here we are talking about our plans, our dreams and our future or should I say she was, because all of a sudden I find myself lost while she is talking up a storm as to "how on fire she is" with our dream. For the past year, we have worked intensely together creating a blueprint for our concepts and our dreams. The plan was we would be making these real estate deals so we could continue to fund our dreams. I had left my "job" after basically having a stable income for all of my adult life in some form or another. Of coarse, we were able to do this through a business credit line, of which we had anticipated to pay back within the year due to the projected sales of real estate.

But then came the real estate crash, who would have thought........ Go figure, right???? And even in the crash, with the listings we had, and good solid contracts coming in, the deals fell apart because the sellers were suddenly upside down. There is no way we could have foreseen the drastic drop in prices in one year in Miami. At the time the market seemed to be doing well. But life has a way of take funny turns. My sister is a single mother and I, while married, and in a very stable relationship had been the major bread winner in our household. All of a sudden my sister and I are faced with no income coming in and debts piling up. It so happened that at this time my sister was also in the process of a surgical procedure to repair damage to an injured ankle from a car accident five years ago. The pain was so bad from barely any cartilage, she could hardly walk.

We were both faced with: "Now what?" There was no other option but for me to go out and find another "job." This was excruciatingly difficult for me, probably as much as the pain in her ankle.

I have been in the system of working for someone and receiving a "paycheck" for 30 years since I got out of college. On the other hand, my sister has always been self-employed and an entrepreneur in her real estate business. Quite a different world for each of us. So when I began working with her, it really took a long while for me to make that shift from "paycheck mentality" to self-employed, entrepreneur, creator of my own destiny. Don't get me wrong, I have had my own small private practice and within the last 15 years worked as an independent contractor with different agencies. But our work together was different. It was creating something different.

We were really creating our hopes, dreams and desires. And then came the real estate market crash, and then the financial markets crash. I had to go back to work in something that I did not necessarily receive a great deal of satisfaction but in the moment paid the bills and most of the time barely.

Going back to the beginning of the story, while I am on the phone with her and lost looking for this address, she was been "TOTALLY "immersed in continuing the dream because her schedule and lifestyle at this point allows it. (Thank God because if not our dreams would have died). One person always has to hold that dream.

A few months ago, I re-entered the "system of work "and all that this entails. Yes living paycheck to paycheck as so many Americans do this day. Today happened to be a more frustrating day as I experienced computer problems etc. etc. etc.

As we were talking on the phone, I finally get fed up with going around in circles and tell her I need to get off the phone because I am lost and need to find this address before 5:00 pm. I focus and begin to think as I am driving, "I know I am in the right area. I am only a block off, how can
I not find this place? "

As I retrace my steps to where I had been earlier I decide to go a little further in what I had assumed and thought was a DEAD END because I was in my frustration of the emotion of my conversation with my sister and was not paying attention. As I went a couple of feet further, there was the address that I was looking for. Yes it was the DEAD END" I HAD NOT GONE FAR ENOUGH.

Funny in our conversation on the phone my sister had said something about pushing - pushing for the dream. While I felt sometimes I was drowning being back in the system and allowing myself to get frustrated about details, I understood what she was saying. I do the same in my marriage with my husband. Sometimes I hold the dream and push for the dream.

I realize that this is what is important in working with partnerships whether it is with my sister or with my husband, at some point in time one person of the partnership has to hold the dream.

We all go through those moments where we feel like giving up. I have been in that mode and today's experience reminded me of that. What I thought and saw as the DEAD END was really the final destination that I was looking for. We all somehow tend to give up right before we get to our final destination. It's that last mile that makes or breaks us. It's not being able to see the forest for the trees that we lose our vision.

Want to know how to learn from life experiences, let go of pain and find real strength right from the heart of the crisis in your life? Get free tips, resources on personal development and spiritual growth from

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Build Strong Relationships - Four Tips on How to Use Conflict to Create Intimacy By Eric Coggins

If you are a normal red-blooded human being, you hate conflict. In fact, most people avoid conflict like the plague. However, what we do not realize is that at least some level of conflict is necessary to gaining intimacy with another human being. A Cambodian proverb says "you are not a close friend until you have had a fight with that person." This article presents four tips on how to use conflict to create intimacy.

First, look at conflict as a way to learn more about yourself.

Often, when we are in the heat of the moment, we become locked into the problem and fail to learn from the situation. However, Stephen Covey, 1989, wrote that humans have four distinct gifts to help us change unwanted behavior. One of those gifts is self-awareness. Through the gift of self-awareness, you can use conflict to find out who you are and what makes you tick. You can learn about what is important to you and why you are having a problem with your friend.

The other three gifts are conscience, imagination and independent will. These gifts help us assess our behavior as right or wrong (conscience); design a new course of action (imagination); and carry it out (independent will).

Employment of all four gifts will help you know how to fine-tune to your partner and allow you to grow closer to them.

Second, look at conflict as an opportunity to learn more about your friend or partner.

When your worldview collides with their worldview, you learn more about them and what makes them tick.

This follows only if you are willing to suspend your need for self-preservation. Covey points out that in between stimulus and response is a space or gap. If you can teach yourself to think before you react, then you can exploit this space to make better choices. Unfortunately, most of us are prone to react instantaneously rather than take a step back and think through what just happened.

If we can learn to exploit the space and delay our response, then we can also learn to ask questions about our partner's behavior. Such questions will help them know that you want to know them better and will cause them to trust you more. As trust deepens, your relationship will become more intimate.

Third, learn to be humble.

Humility is an essential quality for close friendships. Humility means to have a right view of yourself. To have a right view of yourself means to accurately assess your worth, thinking neither too highly nor too lowly about your life. In fact, you are a masterpiece of
God's own hand, created to be the special person you are.

The same is true of your friend or companion. As such you are both very valuable. When you have a correct view of yourself and others, you will treat them with greater respect and dignity. Conflict is an opportunity to practice humility and to reiterate the worth of others.

Fourth, learn the fine art of reconciliation.

Few know how to reconcile their relationships. When relationships go sour, most people either throw up their hands to fight it out or drop their heads and slink away. But, if you can learn how to reconcile in an amiable way, you will have the intimate relationships of all. Reconciliation includes learning how to apologize for offenses committed against the other and how to forgive when others hurt you. A

lthough it is not advisable to purposely seek out trouble, the more conflict you encounter the more you will learn how to deal with conflict and how to reconcile with your loved ones.
Conflict is never easy and most people try to avoid it. This article has discussed four tips on how to use conflict to create more intimate relationships.

Eric Coggins - is the author of the 92 page ebook The Best You:Foundation Principles of an Effective Life. If you would like to know more about that book and how to have an abundant life, checkout

Eric CogginsLevel: Basic PLUSI grew up somewhere between Disneyland and Hollywood. I am the third child of four, and second boy of three. Both my parents are still ... ...

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Been Dumped? Relax, already!

This post was written obviously for the women but I think men can take something from it as well...

So you've been dumped. It's happened to all of us, at one time or another. Still, this is a case where 'misery loves company' doesn't quite apply. It hurts. A lot. It may require some effort to learn to be alone again. But there are things you can do for yourself to make it easier. First step is: be kind to yourself. Even though it feels like amputation, ditch every reminder you have of the relationship. Seeing things that remind you will only make it harder to get over him.

Discard the love letters, Valentine cards and the CDs. Whatever reminds you of the guy, get rid of. If he gave you valuable jewelry, sell it. Better yet, throw it into the nearest body of water, whether it's the ocean or a river-- the physical act of throwing his things away will free you, really it will.

Then, relax. Relax? When your heart feels as if it's been through a blender? It's really not as difficult as it sounds-- trust me on this. Doing sweet, romantic things for yourself will help ease your heart and mind. For instance, draw a nice warm bath for one. Light a few candles, brew a steaming mug of chamomile tea and turn on some lovely music (just not 'your song'). Something instrumental, without words, is just the thing. Add a generous spill of essential oil such as lavender or rose to your bath for an even more relaxing time. Roll a thick towel into a nice neck pillow and climb in.

Every time that 'he' comes across your mind, push him away with better thoughts. If you find this difficult to do, simply count backwards from one-hundred. Whatever it takes to displace thoughts of the jerk that dumped you-- do it. Indulge your favorite fantasy, as long as it doesn't involve you-know-who. Lather up with the most expensive soap or bath gel you can afford; this is the time to totally treat yourself, and well. Skip shaving your legs, unless this is something that you like to do just for yourself.

This is a good time to be absolutely selfish! Sing out loud, as long as it's nothing romantic. "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair" is a good choice, if you know it. And if you don't know it, fake it. Scrub yourself all over with a long backbrush, loofah or natural sponge. Enjoy your beautiful body and nevermind the idiot who left it. Remember that you're an exquisite woman and you will be loved again. No hurries, though-- realize that this is a time of solitude, not loneliness. As you soak in the soothing, fragrant waters let your mind wander, as long as it's not toward memories of him. Lavish yourself with love 'til your toes wrinkle, then dry yourself with a thick, warm towel.

Now, caress yourself slowly with an indulgent body-butter or lotion. Enjoy yourself completely.

Give yourself a good deep foot massage then slip into a pair of warm, snuggly socks. Brush your hair slowly while reminding yourself what a lovely, valuable woman you truly are. Above all, keep relaxing, gentle thoughts in your mind.

The old adage 'time heals all wounds' really is (as most old adages are) true. Each day that passes will be easier and easier until finally you will laugh that you every thought 'he' was worth your time. Be your own best friend and love yourself completely. Face it. Fellows come and go, but we're with ourselves forever.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Be More Attractive & Release the Fear of Being Alone Today By Nick Arrizza, M.D.

The fear of being alone inflicts on anyone who harbors it feelings of insecurity, anxiety, low self esteem and self worth, the tendency to depend and rely too readily on others and their opinions, feelings of emptiness and a needy disposition that makes them unattractive to others. In other words it perpetuates the very thing that the person fears i.e. being alone.

Yet many who are afflicted by this have no idea what to do about it other than to try and wrestle it to the ground and pretend to themselves and others that they are not afraid of being alone.

Does this feel like a tenable strategy to you? Hardly!

There is another solution and I present it here in a powerful way that I feel will shift you and your experience permanently if you wish to undertake this pioneering journey into yourself.

Let's start with the simple question:

What does this fear actually motivate you to do?

Well it supposedly motivates one to find friends so that they will no longer feel alone.

So if they are no longer feeling alone what are they supposedly feeling instead?

Well they would be feeling secure, comfortable, like they fit in, attractive to others, loved, good about themselves, happy, at peace and so on.

So in summary one could then say that:

The fear of being alone causes one to feel secure, comfortable, like they fit in, loved, good about themselves, happy, at peace and so on. (I call this the Summary Statement)

Now if we look at what the fear of being alone actually does to you you'll notice as stated above that it leads to feelings of insecurity, anxiety, low self esteem and self worth, the tendency to depend and rely to readily on others and their opinions, feelings of emptiness and a needy disposition that makes them unattractive to others. In other words it perpetuates the very thing that the person fears i.e. being alone.

This fear is clearly TOXIC, is it not?

If you see this place one hand over your heart and as if you are speaking from there simply affirm this to yourself and then notice how you feel.

Now does what this fear does to you concur with the Summary Statement above?

Hardly, because they are exact opposites!

So which is the truth about this fear?

Well I think that you'll recognize that the Summary Statement is false.

If you do, place one hand over your heart, and as if you are speaking from there simply affirm this to yourself and then notice how you feel.

So do you want this false statement to be living inside your mind or body? If not, as if you are speaking from your heart command that it be forever purged from your life.

Next, with your hand over your heart command the fear of being alone to be purged from your life.

Finally, in the present tense (i.e. I am feeling ...etc.) describe how you would rather feel and be.

Once you have your list then once again affirm this as if you are speaking this from you heart.

Notice how you feel now.

If you've followed this you'll find yourself in an entirely new place in your self and you life.


Friday, July 10, 2009

A Positive Emotional Mental State = Experiencing Life to the Fullest By Daniel Massicotte

Mental state is what getting anything done boils down to. Throughout the years I have been encouraged by my teachers to learn how to multi-task. I really don't like multi-tasking because I cannot focus on one thing with my entire mind and do the best job possible. Multi-taking is something that I can do if I want to get a bunch of activities out of the way at the same time. When I do this the quality of the activities I am engaging myself in is jeopardized.

I recently put myself in a mental state that focused on being thankful. I just had surgery and was bed-ridden for a full three weeks. There really was only so much Seinfeld I could watch!

I built up the courage to write 15 "Thank You" letters to the first 15 people that came to my mind. This was a challenge because I had never done it before. I also was a little concerned that the people receiving the letters would think I'm crazy.

As I worked myself up to do this challenge I began to feel strong emotions of gratitude. I'm not talking about the thankfulness you exhibit when the driver waits for you as you run in the pouring rain to catch the bus. These emotions brought tears to my eyes because I knew that I was addressing certain things I had never taken the time to be grateful for. I never even considered their meaning.

One of these things was how my brother practically yelled at me to 'grow up!' Another one was the generosity in time someone had given me so I could share things with them I could not with others. Another letter made me realize just how much one of my mentors had done for me over the last four years.

These are feelings that we are meant to experience every day. Unfortunately we're not always receptive to them and so we close them out. This can happen for any number of reasons. I would like dive into what I feel is one of the top emotions that prevent us from feeling so full and abundant, but that will be another article, for another time.

What is most important is that we learn to be grateful for everything and everyone in our lives.

We need to recognize things that happen to us that displease us and change out mental state so that we can see the good in them instead of the bad.

Negative people always see negative results and experience life from a negative stand point.

Positive people on the other hand have a complete reverse experience. They look for the good that happens in every situation. Instead of having a bad day, they have a bad hour. Instead of crying over their wallet being stolen, they get on the phone to get new cards and then go do something they enjoy!

Be that positive person, and tell me about it!

Dan Massicotte is perhaps the most positive oriented individual you will ever meet. You can learn more about him on his website: Join his newsletter to be informed of new articles and website developments.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A New Look at Finding Love By Dr. Brenda Shoshanna

Everyone wants love and yet today it seems more difficult than ever to know how to build a lasting relationship and find the fulfillment we desire. In many circles, traditional relationships and commitment are a thing of the past. For many, it has become hard to find a suitable partner and create a lasting home.

It's useful to take a new look, from an old point of view about what love is and how to find it. Both Zen and Jewish practice offer unique point of view about love, which can ease the loneliness many today experience.

In Jewish practice, it is in the very process of being in relationship, in which we learn what it means to love. In Jewish practice, romantic feelings, which come and go, are not a foundation for lasting love. The wedding is just a beginning; the person you marry is there to show you what it means to love. Your partner is your teacher, to show you the ways you need to grow. You focus on caring for and serving your partner, not on being served. When your partner is disturbing you, they are giving you an opportunity to grow. Thank them for behaving this way. They are teaching you to let go of self-centered focus, accept differences, be patient and not judge.

Zen practice asks that we first establish the ability to love within. We step back from the chase and ask what it is we are truly seeking and what it is we lack? Many feel something is missing without a partner. If they cannot or do not find their perfect partner, they are unworthy or have failed. But who is searching, and who must be found?

From the Zen point of view, this search for ourselves in another person is dangerous and misleading. Just as you are, you are complete and whole. Nothing need be added. Your original nature encompasses all; it is neither male nor female, big nor small. The feeling that you lack something comes from obsession with seeking your good outside of yourself. In the practice of zazen as we sit, we become aware of our false ideas, fears and constrictions and let them go. As we do so, we become readily able to see the beauty in others and to love and care for all.

Jewish practice also teaches that the experience of falling in love is not necessarily healthy; it can be a blessing or a curse. The emotions connected to falling in love can be so intense that unless you are prepared, they can cause difficulty and blindness of all kinds. For example, you may not know if what you feel is love or some kind of fantasy infatuation. When intoxication lessens and you see things clearly, you may wonder what you ever saw in the person in the first place.

Psychological and spiritual preparation for this event serves as a protective shield, and directs the intense emotions of the heart. However, in Jewish practice relationship is always crucial. The relationship between man and woman is considered so important that the quality of a person's marriage can tell you everything about who they are. A student wanted to find the best Rebbe to study with. He went around asking, "How can I know if this Rebbe is really great?" Finally a great scholar answered, "If you want to know the quality of the Rebbe, look how happy he makes his wife."

Jewish practice teaches that a truly matched couple are two parts of the same soul, destined to unite. When you are longing for your true partner, you are actually longing for the other part of your soul. However, you have to develop to a level where you can be suitable for the person who is meant for you. If you want to find your soul mate, first attend to your soul - refine your character, increase your goodness. In Zen practice we do not connect with our soul mates but with our authentic selves. As we live from what is most deep and real, all separation and loneliness dissolve and love naturally arises for all. At this time it is not necessary to seek that one particular person, each person we encounter is simply another part of ourselves, there to be appreciated, nourished and cared for in anyway we can.

Whether based upon Jewish or Zen practice, all relationships which are grounded in the ability to care for and nourish others can only become a source of strength and wisdom for all concerned.

Dr. Brenda ShoshannaLevel: PlatinumDr Brenda Shoshanna is a psycohlogist, author, speaker and relationship expert on i.village. Her most recent book is The Anger Diet, (30 Days To Stress ... ...)

Saturday, July 4, 2009

365 Reasons Why I Love You - Tell Someone How Much They Mean to You By Allen Jesson

When it comes to giving someone a gift, most people will look for a something that stands out or in some way shows how much they care about someone.

Giving a gift to show a person how much they mean to you does not have to cost a fortune, In fact there is no better way to show your love than to spend some time making a list of 365 reasons why I love you.

When writing your list of 365 reasons why I love you, try not to focus too much on physical things, consider the persons likes, dislikes, things they say and most importantly the little gestures they make that make you smile.

An example of some of the reasons you could use when compiling your list of 365 reasons why I love you could be:

Your strength Your devotion

How you are always 100% honest no matter what

Your kindness

Your smile

The way you are always happy first thing in the morning when I am grumpy

The way you take pride in how you look

The compliments you give me

The way you touch my face when we kiss

The little looks you give me when we are around friends

Your loyalty to me and everyone or everything that matters to you

Your compassion for everyone around you

Your selflessness

Your integrity

Your strength

Your devotion

The way you hold me

The way you liven up a room just by being in it

How much you have taught me about life and myself

Your intelligence

The fact that you are good at fixing things or putting things together by hand

Your zest for life

I love to wake up with you by my side...It makes my days better

You always make me feel that you are by my side no matter what

I love that feeling of being secure when you wrap your arms around me

I love the way you keep your cool when I do something stupid

Just being with you feels like I can defy the whole world

You mean the world to me

I like your small gestures that speak volumes about how much you care

Once you have written your list of 365 reasons why I love you it may be a good idea to have a card made and place the list inside. You may even want to read the list to your partner over a romantic dinner.

However you decide to present your list of 365 reasons why I love you, make sure you have taken time to list everything that means something to you, sometimes the silly things that people do are the things that make us love them even more.

Are you struggling to create a list of 365 reasons why I love you? Allen Jesson can help you write 365 reasons why I love you.

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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

24 Daily Habits Posted by Peter Clemens

We first make our habits, and then our habits make us - John Dryden

I have previously written about how the habit of Exercising Every Day has helped me tremendously. Doing something every day is such a powerful way to form a habit that I thought I would make a list of 24 habits that are worth doing on a daily basis. Note: I have divided these into morning, day and night although some could obviously be under different headings.

The Morning

1. Wake Early:

I am a big fan of waking at 5am and spending time working on myself before going to work. I have written more about this habit here.

2. Exercise:

when I had the goal of exercising 4 times a week I found it was very easy to tell myself I will exercise tomorrow instead. Setting the expectation of daily exercise removed this as a potential excuse and I have since reaped the benefits of this daily habit.

3. Review or (even better) Rewrite Your Goals:

each day I try to get closer to achieving my short, medium and long term goals. Starting the day by reviewing or rewriting my goals means that I have better awareness of them throughout the day. As Robin Sharma says:
With better awareness you can make better choices and when you make better choices, you will see better results.

4. Read and/ or Listen to Motivational Material:

in the morning a whole day of endless possibilities lies ahead. I motivate myself to play my best game by reading and listening to inspirational books/ audiobooks.

5. Visualise the Day Ahead:

I like to take a few minutes to shut my eyes and visualise what I want happen in the coming day. It’s amazing how often my desires become reality when I do this.

6. Write a “To Do” list:

I like to write out a list in my diary of the important tasks I need to do that day. As they are completed I put a line through them. So simple, yet so effective.

7. Check the News Headlines:

I think it’s important to have an idea of what is happening in our community and the world. Also if don’t at least check the main stories, I find it is easy to feel left out of conversations throughout the day.

8. Take a Multivitamin:

I try to eat a well balanced diet, but taking a multivitamin daily reassures me that I obtaining the proper amount of vitamins and minerals that I need (**Update: see comments).

9. Tidy Up:

a cluttered house can lead to a cluttered mind and fuzzy thinking. I find it’s best to stay on top of things by tidying up each day.

10. Take Time to Look Good:

it’s a reality of life that people judge us by our appearance. I take a few minutes each morning to ensure I go out into the world looking the best I can.

The Day

11. Put First Things First:

Many people have their day controlled by tasks that are urgent , but not necessarily important. Examples include interruptions, some email and some phone calls. The habit of putting first things first is about organising and executing your life around your deepest priorities.

12. Connect with Nature:

I find spending time outdoors in nature is great for my sense of wellbeing. I have written about this here.

13. Blog:

blogging makes me think and write - two things that I can’t get enough of each day. I have written more about the benefits of blogging here.

14. Snack Well:

I substitute the chips, candy and chocolate with fruit, vegetables (carrots and celery are great to chomp on) and nuts.

15. Be Proactive:

being proactive means showing initiative and taking the responsibility to make things happen. Whenever I want something to happen, I ask myself: what can I do to make this happen?

16. Ping a Friend:

I try to send a quick email or text to a friend each day. It’s a great way to stay in touch with friends when I am extremely busy.

17. Save:

I save at least 10% of each paycheck. A great way to find the money to save is to break it down to a daily amount, for example $10-15. By taking account of the Latte Factor I find it easy to save this much.

The Evening

18. Have Family Time:

on a typical workday I won’t see much of my partner and son, so I believe it’s important to, at the very least, be there most evenings. Family time is about quantity and quality.

19. Floss:

This is essential to reduce tooth decay and gum disease. Why wouldn’t you want to have the best smile possible?

20. Wind Down:

I try to switch off the computer and the TV about 30 to 60 minutes before bedtime and let my brain have some down time after a long day. I sleep far more peacefully when I do this.

21. Review My Day:

I find this is a great way to hold myself to account for taking action throughout the day. Did I get closer to achieving my goals? Did I complete my to do list? Did my day go as planned? If not, why not?

22. Read:

I love to read and do so continuously throughout the day. I find it is especially good to read just before to going to bed. Just makes sure it’s a relaxing book, and not one about nuclear physics (see habit #20).

23. Say I Love You to My Family Members:

don’t just assume that your family members know you love them. I say these words to my partner and son at least once per day.

24. Go to Bed At A Reasonable Time:

the first habit of this list (waking early) begins by going to bed at a reasonable time and getting a good nights sleep.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

8 Grand Love Letter Ideas By Edward Bordi

Is preparation really necessary? That's debatable.
Sure, you can write a love letter on a whim with no thought whatsoever. I suggest you do that, there's certainly a place for it - it's spontaneous, it's fun and it's sincere (often times). So go for it; that is, if you can.

But the problem is that it's not so easy for some.

And even for those who can, an unhurried, deliberate and well-planned love letter is much better. Of course that's my opinion, but here's why I feel that way. It shows you care, that you're not always in a hurry, that you're willing to take time out of your busy schedule and do nothing but think about her, do something for her. Like write her a very special love letter or better yet, a series of love letters.

Be resolute and don't delay.

Decide what you want to write about - there are literally thousands of things to say. You're limited only by your unlimited imagination. It's true, but if you're imagination seems to have stalled then maybe one of these eight ideas will help jump-start it.

There are literally thousands of things to say... you're limited only by your unlimited imagination.

Take them and use them, be my guest. Some may be new (or at least new to you), but others are old, tried and tested. Pick one, pick them all.

Eight Grand Love Letter Ideas

1. Just because

2. Top 10

3. Best of the month

4. The treasure hunt

5. The secret message

6. The plot

7. Dream it

8. If you were

Love Letter Idea # 1 - Just because

Write about whatever moves you. Think of your special someone and ask yourself who, what, where, why, when, how. Write from your heart.

Love Letter Idea # 2 - Top 10

"...reasons I love you," "...places we've been," "...things you say," "...adorable habits," "etc..."

Love Letter Idea # 3 - Best of the month

Slow down and take notice. Soak up every minute you have. Enjoy the way her hair falls across her cheek, her dimples, her smile, the way she moves, talks and laughs. Remember the jokes, the stories and the dreams. I know you could list a thousand things if you just took the time.

Well, take the time! Record the best things in your journal. One day each month, review them and pick your favorite. Now write her a love letter .. "the way your hair falls across your cheeks... softly, lovely, ..."

Love Letter Idea # 4 - The treasure hunt

Buy something nice and hide it. Write a love letter a day hinting to its location.

Love Letter Idea # 5 - The secret message

Write a letter with a dual message. It's just a regular old letter until you apply the decoder - then you see the love letter appear.

Love Letter Idea # 6 - The plot

Remake your favorite romantic movie or book with you and your true love as the leading man and lady. Blueprint the book and send her a page or a chapter at a time. You can do it.

Love Letter Idea # 7 - Dream it

Imagine a life with no constraints for you and your true love. Take her into your dreams and don't leave out a single detail... "the color of her sandals...," "the flower in her hair," ...

Love Letter Idea # 8 - If you were

If you were a melody, a desert, a landscape, a book, a movie, etc.

So there you have it, eight grand love letter ideas. Now start WRITE-ing a love letter of your own.

Edward BordiLevel: Basic PLUSEdward A. Bordi is a committed husband and father. When it comes to love letters, he wrote the book, "The Love Letter Handbook."

Saturday, June 27, 2009

18 Love Letter Benefits By Edward Bordi

It is amazing that such a simple gesture as writing a love letter could have such a profound impact on you and your true love. Not to mention on all those watching you, observing your commitment to love.

What's more, writing frequent love letters

1. Builds excitement that's not easily quenched. Each letter when prepared with care is like a surprise gift, tucked behind the couch just out of sight that appeared out of nowhere on Christmas morning.

2. Instills a joy that can endure the storms of life and that can even place an upward curve on sweet lips that have been crying all day. A couple heartfelt words on a sheet of paper can work wonders.

3. Recovers happiness lost during the clutter of busy days, screaming kids, yelling bosses, traffic jams, spilled coffee or whatever the crazy episode of the day happened to be. All the worries of the day melt away when you know someone loves you no matter what!

4. Creates hope even where hope never existed. A word of encouragement - a simple "I support you," "We'll get there together," or "You can do it!" in a romantic love letter can make you a believer.

5. Produces a forgiving spirit out of your commitment to write frequent love letters - a habit that will result in a desire to keep your relationship pure and free from bitterness and grudges.

6. Encourages communication that results in a closer more intimate relationship; more meaningful conversations, more talking, joking and more laughing.

7. Stirs passions resulting in more nights out together, more flowers with a note two pages long, more mornings with breakfast in bed and more hugs and kisses with no prompting whatsoever.

8. Cultivates trust and commitment that keeps growing stronger as you establish this excellent habit - writing frequent love letters.

9. Promotes romance... more alone time, more tenderness, more compassion, more concern, more fun and more tiny surprises for no reason at all.

10. Discourages destructive behavior by filling your heart and mind with love, tenderness and compassion; leaving little and eventually no room for anything bad.

11. Relieves stress by helping you to relax, laugh and maybe even cry happy tears. A love letter takes your mind off your troubles, if even just for a few moments.

12. Reduces fighting and tension by replacing those horrible, kill-joy, stress-creating parts of every relationship with patient loving conservations, prompted by a love letter. Who wouldn't want to reduce or even eliminate, if at all possible, fighting and tension?

13. Abolishes sadness with a few genuine words like "I love you," "I'm here" or "Just wait until you see..." - words that can change your mood instantaneously. Telling them you love them, sharing a happy note or hinting to a fun surprise works every time.

14. Eradicates loneliness with communication that's sincere and hard to challenge. Commitment to sharing deep thoughts, concerns, worries, hopes and dreams can only result in a closer relationship and not one that's more distant.

15. Dissolves boredom because writing and reading love letters is a fun and exciting activity that never gets old. You can easily spend a lifetime pursuing your lover's ever-changing wants, needs and desires.

16. Sets a good example for all those around you who are watching you and your commitment to love. Your friends, relatives, neighbors and children are watching you. This is your chance to be a good role model. As it's been well said,
... good character is caught, not taught.

17. Endorses faithfulness by filling your heart, mind and soul with love for your one and only true love. And by committing to keep filling your heart, mind and soul with things lovely and good.

18. Deters deceit because it is hard to genuinely move in two separate directions at the same time. Perhaps some can, but even so, writing frequent love letters with words of love, compassion, hope, joy and happiness will eventually tug on the conscience, suggesting change.

If writing a love letter truly could produce that list of benefits, then why not invest even just 5 minutes a week and bring back the lost art one letter at a time.

I made a personal commitment to write frequent love letters to my darling wife; to warm her soul, nourish her heart, to make certain she knows and feels my love, to add excitement, surprise, joy, hope and everything good to her life.

I challenge you to do the same for your true love.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

5 Ways to Have the Perfect Night Out With Your Friends By Jane Worthington

Going out with your friends to the same old, crowded bars can be a drag after a while. If you're in the mood to have some fun, and to make the night stand apart from all of the others, then take a look at a few guidelines to having the perfect night out with your friends.

1. Pick a theme.

Choosing a theme always makes a night out on the town, more interesting and fun. It serves as a way to distinguish this night, from every other night. For example, a "White party" means everyone wears white, and it unites all of your friends for the evening. Or the always popular "80's night" is fun. This way, people can get a little silly and have fun while doing it.

2. Choose your bar wisely.

If you decide to go with a theme, the bar you go to should complement that theme. So, if you're going with a formal, white party, the bar should be upscale and appropriate, like the White Horse. If you're not going with a theme, the bar is even more important, because you want to choose a place where everyone can have fun and be comfortable. You want somewhere that has comfortable counter bar stools and a nice atmosphere. Choosing a club or a bar that is really loud can get in the way of the conversations you could be enjoying, somewhere else.

3. Wear comfy shoes.

This doesn't mean you shouldn't wear your favorite heels, but it means to keep in mind that you're trying to have a fun night out. Wearing those 4 inch heels are only going to cause you pain later in the night, meaning a decreased amount of fun.

4. Choose a set amount of money to bring with you.

There's nothing worse than waking up the day after a night out and realizing you spent way too much money. To prevent this from happening, take a set amount of money out with you and even if you spend it all, at least you know you didn't go over your budget.

5. Know when to call it a night.

When you start feeling tired or worn out, have the sense to know it's time to go home. The best nights are the one where you go out and have a blast, and still make it home in time to catch a good night's sleep and wake up tomorrow feeling energized for the beach! If you end up pushing yourself by staying out, chances are you're going to spend more money, and you'll look back with a different attitude than if you had gone home when you first started thinking about it.

Typically, enjoying a night out with friends doesn't require a list of things to remember, but keeping these things in mind can turn a good night into a great night. So with these simple ideas, next time you're trying to plan a night out it will be better than all the rest! Of course, you can always plan a night in with your friends, and throw a party at home to save some money if you want to take a break from going out all the time.

Jane WorthingtonLevel: PlatinumCreative Writer who loves to write about anything and everything under the sun and online! ...

Sunday, June 21, 2009

4 Steps to Unleash Your Creative Genius Posted by Marelisa Fabrega

James M. Higgins, author of 101 Creative Problem Solving Techniques: The Handbook of New Ideas for Business, defines creativity as the process of generating something new that has value.

Creative ideas run the gamut from new associations of existing ideas, elements, or concepts, to radical breakthroughs which extend the boundaries of human knowledge and create paradigm shifts. That is, you don’t necessarily have to make a quantum leap to be creative; you can begin by finding ways to improve an existing product, or by modifying a process to make it more efficient.

Creativity can mean identifying an untapped market for an existing product, finding a new solution to a problem, finding creative ways to resolve a labor dispute, and so on. In addition, creativity is not the sole domain of the arts—whether it’s painting, theatre, music, architecture, dancing, literature, and so on—but is important in any field, from medicine to business, and from engineering to economics.

Also, creativity applies to all facets of life. You can use creativity to solve daily problems and to think of new ways to deal with everyday challenges; you can use creativity to find novel ways to increase your income and finally build your nest egg, you can find creative ways to get your child to go to bed at night, you can be creative when it comes to finding a way to get your employees to arrive at work on time in the mornings, and so on.

Developing your creativity is one of the best things you can do to lead a more satisfying and fulfilling life. Fortunately, as most creativity experts hold - including Jack Foster, Roger von Oech, Edward de Bono, and others - creativity is a process that can be learned, practiced, and perfected. Below you will find four steps you can follow to be more creative. These steps are roughly modeled after the five step technique set forth in the creativity classic, A Technique for Producing Ideas by James Webb Young.

1. Gather Information on Your Subject Matter

The first step involves gathering information about the topic at hand. Read everything you can on your subject matter: go to the library and check out books, go to your neighborhood bookstore and browse though interesting reading material, read magazine articles, subscribe to a newsletter, surf the internet for information, subscribe to blogs dedicated to your topic, and so on. You can also talk to people who have knowledge on the topic and ask them lots of questions, go to a lecture, enroll in a seminar, and even take an online class. The more you know about a topic, the more likely you are to come up with creative ideas for that subject matter.

2. Digest the Information and Apply Creativity Techniques

The second step involves digesting and working with the raw material that you gathered in the previous step. There are many books on creativity which offer the reader different creativity techniques to help in the generation of ideas, and at this point you can begin applying these techniques to your problem. Some creativity techniques are intended to “open your mind” and encourage “free thinking”, such as idea generation and brainstorming sessions, guided imagery, and other expansive techniques. For example, you can begin by releasing all of the preconceived ideas and assumptions you have about the topic and disregard fixed lines of thinking and rigid behavior patterns.

Other techniques create constraints and force your mind to focus, such as setting time deadlines and other methods that force you to converge on a particular course of action. For example, in problem-solving contexts, the random word creativity technique has been shown to produce great results for those who apply it. Basically, a person confronted with a problem is presented with a randomly generated word and is told to make associations between the word and the problem as a creativity goad. By combining expansive and constraining creativity techniques you can come up with several different alternatives to choose from for solving the problem at hand.

3. Take Time for Incubation

The third stage is letting go. You just drop the subject entirely, go do something else, and let the unconscious mind deal with the problem. After a period of intense concentration, Albert Einstein would take a nap or find another way to detach from whatever he was working on. He found that during these mental breaks his unconscious mind would go on thinking about the challenge and surprise him with an insight when he least expected it.

Isaac Asimov was quoted as saying that when he got stuck writing a book he would simply put the project aside and start writing a completely different book. When he returned to the original project he would find that his unconscious mind had figured things out and the ideas would just flow. Therefore, after a period of thinking hard about a problem, the next step is to either work on something entirely different, or to relax: practice deliberate frivolity, go to a museum, go to the movies, or go for a twenty minute walk. Many people have reported “Eureka” moments while taking time for incubation.

4. Refine the Idea and Make it Real

The final stage is where you use trial and experimentation to test, edit, refine and polish the idea. In addition, at this step you need to make your idea real. In her inspiring book, Creative Companion: How to Free Your Creative Spirit , Sark tells the story of an Australian artist named Ken Done who created a painting he thought would look great on bed sheets. He took the idea to a sheet company but they turned him down because they just couldn’t visualize bed sheets with his painting on them. Ken then went home, took a white bed sheet, painted his painting on it, and took it back to the sheet company. The bed sheet he painted looked so fabulous that the sheet company immediately placed a large order. It’s not enough to come up with great ideas, you have to act to turn those ideas into reality.


Begin implementing these steps in all areas of your life, whether it’s your home life, at work, or anything else you’re involved in. In the words of Abraham Maslow: “The key question isn’t ‘What fosters creativity?’ But it is why in God’s name isn’t everyone creative? Where was the human potential lost? How was it crippled? I think therefore a good question might be not why do people create? But why do people not create or innovate? We have got to abandon that sense of amazement in the face of creativity, as if it were a miracle if anybody created anything.”

This guest post was written by Marelisa Fabrega who blogs at

Friday, June 19, 2009

2 Simple Ways to Raise Your Self-confidence By Rose Blood

A person’s self-confidence means a lot nowadays. It affects just about everything in their life. Meaning: If you have bad self-confidence, life will not be easy for you, actually life will be a LOT more difficult. Luckily human mind is easily tricked. Of course, that is the main reason people have bad self-confidence in the first place. Only reason anyone is shy/lonely etc. is because their brain tells them all those horrible things that will happen, if they go and talk to that cute babe who has been checking them out for the last five hours. Eventually, if the case is a completely lost case, one of three things will happen:

1.Guy will not get his act together and just nervously stares at the floor, until it is time to leave.

2.He goes and talks to the girl, but is too nervous to make up any small talk and ends up making an ass of himself. And later at home, he vows never to talk any females again.

3.He gets his act together, makes a great impression, gets some sex and notices a massive growth in his self-confidence.

Lucky for us, there are some super-nerds who have found ways to fool your brain and win your greatest fears. And these don´t even take too long to do either!

The sweet failure: First of all, what makes us be so afraid of a confrontation? The fear of failure.

The dreaded feeling, that our world will end permanently, if we fail. Which in turn, makes us more nervous than we should ever be. Simplest thing to do, in order to avoid this horrifying fate, is to visualize the worst consequence that will happen. For example. Lets say you go and talk to that beautiful babe on the edge of a dance floor. You step in to the room, your belt breaks and your pants fall down and at the same time you piss on yourself. Sure, everyone in the room might laugh at you and you go home ashamed and smelling like piss. But is it the end of the world? HELL NO. Once you realize that failure really doesn't end everything, taking risks really is not that tough and at the same time, your self-confidence skyrockets.

My name is Bond, James Bond: Now this is a funny exercise you can do anywhere. Just close your eyes, and imagine James Bond. Just about any situation is fine, in a bar, home sleeping, at work in the office. Just imagine James Bond walking around, see how he walks, looks, talks, what does he think, how he talks to women, how about men? Now the nice part, put yourself behind him and walk INSIDE him. Now YOU are James Bond, you think like him, you walk like him and most of all, you are just as CONFIDENT as he is. Then just open your eyes and say to yourself: My name is (your name) and I´m the greatest womanizer in this world. It works.

Roseblood is a rather unknown author of the powers of the mind, having trained for many years in the occult arts and struggled with his self-esteem, he has now opened a great site dedicated to people having trouble with these things and since he is such a nice guy, he gives it all for free.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Escape Your Rat Race By Martha Beck

Feeling trapped by a job, relationship, or routine, but terrified of making a change? Martha Beck shows you how to feel your way to freedom.

Sheila and I are conversing at a drug treatment center, where she's been remanded. Counselors are listening, so we can't plan a way to break her out. As it happens, escape is the last thing on Sheila's mind.
I'm not coaching her through the woes of being institutionalized for drug use but prepping her for her upcoming release. "In here everything's simple," Sheila says. "Outside I'll have to deal with my crazy mom, get a job, pay the bills. I don't know how to handle that without drugs." When I ask her to picture a peaceful, happy life, Sheila draws a blank. "I can't imagine anything except what I've already seen," she says. The despair in her voice is so heavy it makes me want to huff a little glue myself, but two things give me hope: a fabled land known in the annals of psychology as Rat Park, and a montage of other clients, once as hopeless as Sheila, who went on to live happy, meaningful lives. The concepts I learned from Rat Park, channeled through the behaviors I've seen in those courageous clients, just may transform Sheila's future.

But first, what is this mythic Rat Park? And how might it relate to you? The term comes from a study conducted in 1981 by psychologist Bruce Alexander and colleagues. He noted that many addiction studies had something in common: The lab rats they used were locked in uncomfortable, isolating cages. Testing a hunch, Alexander gathered two groups of rats. For the first, he built a 200-square-foot rodent paradise called Rat Park. There a colony of white Wister rats found luxurious accommodations for all their favorite pastimes—mingling, mating, raising pups, writing articles for newspaper tabloids.

The second group was housed in the traditional cages. Alexander offered both groups a choice of plain water or sugar water laced with morphine.

Like rats in other studies, the traditionally caged animals became instant addicts. However, the residents of Rat Park tended to "just say no," avoiding the drug-treated sugar water. Even rats that were already addicted to morphine tended to lay off the hard stuff when in Rat Park. Put them back in their cages, however, and they'd stay stoned as Deadheads.Alexander saw many parallels between these junkie rats and human addicts. He has talked of one patient who worked as a shopping mall Santa. "He couldn't do his job unless he was high on heroin," Alexander remembered. "He would shoot up, climb into that red Santa Claus costume, put on those black plastic boots, and smile for six hours straight."This story jingles bells for many of my clients.

Like Smack Santa, they spend many hours playing roles that don't match their innate personalities and preferences, dulling the pain with mood-altering substances. Miserable with their jobs, relationships, or daily routines, they gulp down a fifth of Scotch, buy 46 commemorative Elvis plates on QVC, superglue phony smiles to their faces, and head on out to whatever rat race is gradually destroying them.Sheila was actually a step ahead of most of my clients, in that she knew she was locked up. Most people are trapped in prisons made of mind stuff—attitudes and beliefs such as "I have to look successful" or "I can't disappoint my dad."

Ideas like these—being deeply entrenched and invisible—are often more powerful than physical prisons. When we're trapped in mind cages, gulping happy pills by the handful and fantasizing about lethally stapling coworkers, we rarely even consider that our unhappiness comes from living in captivity. And if we ever come close to recognizing the truth, we're stopped by a barrage of terrifying questions: "What if there's nothing better than this?" "What if I quit my job, lose my seniority, and end up somewhere even worse?" "What if I break off this relationship and end up alone forever?" "What if I get my hopes up and the big break never comes?"When the alternatives are staying in the familiar cage or facing the unknown, trust me, most people choose the cage—over and over and over again. It's painful to watch, especially knowing that liberation is only a few simple steps away. If you suspect that you might need to engineer your own prison break, the following pieces of commonsense advice can set you free forever.

You Don't Have to Know What Rat Park Looks Like"I just don't think I'll ever find the right life for me," Sheila frets. "Of course you won't!" I say. "How strange to think you would!"It amazes me how often people use that phrase: "Find the right life." Would you walk into your kitchen hoping to find the right fried egg, the right cup of coffee, the right toast? Such things don't simply appear before you; they arrive because you rummage around, figure out what's available, and make what you want. (If you're rich, you can hire a chef and place your order, but you're still creating the result.)Bruce Alexander's rats were hand-delivered into paradise. Lucky critters, indeed—but not nearly as lucky as Alexander himself, or the rest of us humans, who have the astonishing ability to envision and build Rat Parks. All animals are shaped by their environment, but we, more than any other species, can shape our environment right back. We can cook the egg, brew the coffee, paint the room, change the space. We can fabricate our Rat Parks, and we must, if we want them built to spec."But I don't know what I'm trying to build," Sheila protests when I tell her this. "How can I create something when I don't have a clue what it looks like?"Time for commonsense suggestion number two.

You Don't Need a Map to Find Your Rat ParkI often invite clients to play the dead-simple game You're Getting Warmer, You're Getting Colder. The client leaves the room, and I hide a simple object—say, a key—in a tricky place, such as the inside of a cake. (Not that I would have done this with someone locked up. Like Sheila. Absolutely not.) When the client returns to the room, he almost invariably stands still, and asks, "What am I looking for?" Obviously, I don't answer him. The only feedback I'll give is "You're getting warmer" or "You're getting colder." Eventually clients will start moving. Guided by the words warmer and colder, they quickly identify the general hiding area. Then there's a period of confusion, fueled by assumptions like "Well, she certainly wouldn't hide it in the cake." They go back and forth for a bit, then stop and demand, "Where is it?" Again, this gets them nothing. Peeved, they revert to following the "warmer/colder" feedback until they arrive at the object. I've never had a client who didn't ultimately succeed. Not one.My point: Life has installed within you powerful "getting warmer, getting colder" signals. When Sheila thought of leaving the treatment center, her tension, anxiety, and drug cravings soared. The time she had to serve was "warmer"; her outside life, "colder." Certain activities were freezing cold—dealing with her mother, working, paying bills. As we examined each of these, we found that her guidance system was giving her beautifully clear messages. For instance, being around sane noncriminals, even officials at the treatment center, felt "warmer" than Sheila's crazy dope-dealing mother. Working in the cafeteria, with its institutional predictability, was "warmer" than her old cocktail waitress job, where she'd flashed her flesh to elicit unpredictable tips from drunken customers. Living within her economic means felt "warmer" than credit card shopping sprees she couldn't afford. True, Sheila was a long way from her own Rat Park. But with the knowledge that her navigation system was functioning perfectly, all she had to do was play her life as a game of You're Getting Warmer, You're Getting Colder. The same is true for you. It isn't necessary to know exactly how your ideal life will look; you only have to know what feels better and what feels worse. If something feels both good and bad, break it down into its components to see which are warm, which cold. Begin making choices based on what makes you feel freer and happier, rather than how you think an ideal life should look. It's the process of feeling our way toward happiness, not the realization of some Platonic ideal, that creates our best lives. "My life is so far from perfect," Sheila says as we end our session. "I don't know if it's fixable." She's ready to hear my third and last piece of commonsense advice.

You Don't Have to Make Big Changes to Get ThereThis step is something I stole from philosopher and engineer Buckminster Fuller. Bucky, as his friends knew him, chose for his epitaph just three words: call me trimtab. Trim tabs are tiny rudders attached to the back of larger rudders that steer huge ships. The big rudders would snap off if turned directly, but, as Fuller famously said, "just moving the little trim tab builds a low pressure that pulls the rudder around. Takes almost no effort at all. So…you can just put your foot out like that and the whole big ship of state is going to go."Every life is a series of trim-tab decisions. Should you read tonight or watch TV? Choose what feels warmer. Self-help or thriller? Choose what feels warmer. Cuddle with the dog or banish him from the bed? Choose what feels (psychologically) warmer. If you make mistakes, no problem; you'll soon feel colder and correct your course.

Making consistent trim-tab choices toward happiness is what steers the mighty ship of your life into exotic ports, safe havens—in short, into every Rat Park you can imagine, and then some.I say goodbye to Sheila not knowing whether she'll set her trim tabs toward happiness or back to her drug-abusing cage of a life. I've learned not to get my hopes up with humans, who aren't nearly as clear-sighted and authentic as rats. But our session reminds me to keep following my own tiny feelings and impulses to their distant and amazing destinations. So instead of worrying about Sheila—or me, or you—I'll choose to trust our powerful instincts, our desire to be happy, our amazing human capacity for invention. You may choose cynical despair instead—it's all the rage in intellectual circles—but if you care to join me, I think you'll find it's a whole lot warmer over here in Rat Park.

Martha Beck is the author of six books. Her most recent is Steering by Starlight (Rodale).

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Five Ways Keeping a Journal Can Change Your Life - Posted by Ali Hale

Have you ever started keeping a journal – perhaps starting on a particular milestone like your birthday, or January 1st – only to give up after a few days or weeks? Like many projects which we’re initially enthusiastic about, writing daily or even weekly in a journal can all too quickly become a chore. After all, what difference can it make to write down words that no-one but you will see?

There are several ways for keeping a journal to change your life, and I’ll show you how to achieve each in just ten minutes a day. Still think it’s not worth it?

1. Your Journal Offers Self-Insight

Do you ever wonder who you really are? Do you have problems which occur again and again – patterns of behaviour that you just can’t break out of? Keeping a journal for an extended period of time lets you learn the truth about yourself: how your motivation waxes and wanes, how many projects you let fizzle out after a brief burst of excitement; what topics you return to again, and again, and again…

Ten-minute exercise:

If you’ve been keeping a journal for a while (even if it’s fallen by the wayside recently), read through some old entries. Do you spot any patterns? Look for strong emotions that occur frequently, such as anger, misery, excitement. You might also take note of recurring problems or difficulties. For example, do entries about lack of sleep coincide with stressful periods such as exams or project deadlines at work?

2. Your Journal Builds the Writing Habit

Are you an aspiring blogger, author, poet, journalist or writer of any description? If you’re making serious attempts at writing, you need to be disciplined about it – no professional writer works just when they’re “in the mood” or when “the muse descends.” Developing the habit of writing regularly (ideally every day) will be a bigger factor in your success than your raw level of writing skill. You will get better if you practice, and your journal is an ideal place to do so – no-one will laugh at clumsy phrases or failed experimental pieces, and you can write about whatever topics inspire you the most.

You can even write about your writing; building the ability to think about how you write will give you insight into your strengths and weaknesses. Being able to explain how and why a piece of your writing worked will let you replicate that achievement in the future.

Ten-minute exercise:

Set aside a period of ten minutes to write a journal entry every day. Even when you don’t think you have anything interesting to say, honour that commitment and write something. Some people are inspired by writing prompts, famous quotations, or simply picking a topic (work, family, health, goals). Even the busiest of us can find ten minutes in the day – set your alarm earlier, if you have to. It’s worth the effort: a hundred and fifty words a day – easily possible in ten minutes – adds up to over fifty thousand words in a year. Once you’ve built up your journaling like this, you’ll find it much easier to work on your other pieces
of writing.

3. Did you keep a journal at any point as a child or teenager?

If so, and if you still have it, go back and re-read some entries: I guarantee that you’ll have a few great laughs and smiles in doing so. There might be references to incidents you’d previously forgotten, or particularly telling phrases or observations. Keeping a journal today means you can look back in five years, ten years or in old age at what you were thinking about, dreaming of, hoping for … it’s the closest you can get to time-travelling back to meet a past version of yourself.

Ten-minute exercise:

EITHER: Pick up one of your old journals and flick through it. What stands out? Are there incidents described that you’d forgotten? Have your views on a particular issue or topic changed radically?

OR: If you’ve never kept a journal in the past, use a page of your current one to write a letter to yourself in the future. Jot down some thoughts about the main strands of your life – are you happy with your job, your relationships, your health and fitness? Write down where you see yourself in a year, and in five years.

4. Your Journal Holds You Accountable

Many people like to record facts and figures in their journal, especially ones which relate to an important life change. Calories consumed, exercise done, cigarettes not smoked, alcohol units drunk … whatever the nature of your change, your journal can help you to achieve it. Seeing your progress in black and white helps you to carry on when your motivation is at rock-bottom, and for some people, the knowledge that they’ll have to record their failures is enough to keep them on the straight-and-narrow.

Ten-minute exercise:

Pick an area of your life where you want to improve: perhaps you want to get up early every day. For the next week, write down how you did each day – it’ll only take a minute or two, and you’ll be able to see if you progress as the week goes on – or if your enthusiasm quickly peters out.

5. Your Journal Encourages Positive Thinking

When you write in your journal, don’t dwell on things that went wrong. Focus on the positive aspects of your day or week – even when you have to dig hard to find something. It might take a while for you to notice the effect, but you’ll soon be seeing faster change in your life: we tend to move towards what we’re focusing on. Time coach Mark Forster advocates writing a daily “What’s better” list, recording the things which were not just good but better – this is a powerful way to focus on growth.

Ten-minute exercise:

If you’re reading this in the evening, how do you feel your day went? (Morning readers – use yesterday.) Chances are, you can think of lots of frustrations, things that went wrong, things that didn’t get done. Get your journal and write “Things which were good today”. List at least five. They don’t have to be big things – something as simple as “I saw a beautiful sunset” or “I left work on time” are fine. Now how do you feel about your day?
our Journal is a Gift to Your Future Self

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Flirting Mistakes Men and Women Make - Jane Rock

Flirting can be fun, but also scary if you do it wrong. You can get rejected in a heart beat if you do it wrong. To help eliminate nervousness and help increase your chances of correctly flirting, you must AVOID these flirting mistakes.

1. Male/Female Friend

A female or male friend can definitely help with dating since they KNOW what the opposite sex likes. If you have a female/male friend trying to help you land dates, the person you are trying to find can look down upon this. They may feel like you are too scared to try to find someone on your own or just to shy. Try not to overuse your female/male friend when trying to land your special someone.

2. Bragging

You definitely need to share your job, skills, etc... with that special female/male, but remember there is no reason to brag about it. You don't need to come out and state the obvious about your HUGE salary and your successful career. Women/men can see the clothes you were, the place you live in, and the car you drive to see how well you are off. There is no need to state the obvious because it can be a HUGE turn off for women/men. Bragging must be avoided. There are certain ways to tell men/women that you are well off, just don't do it in a bragging way.

3. Talk about Just Yourself

It is definitely a big turn off when woman/man does all the talking, especially about just THEMSELVES. Try to focus on listening instead of talking. If you notice you are doing all the talking, try to use something like, well you know all about me, let's find out more about you! Try to focus more on being a good listener than a speaker. The person will appreciate and like you much more!

4. Horrible Pick-up Lines

Pick-up lines are cute and great to maybe share with some close friends. They are not something you should use on a guy/girl when trying to land them. They just aren't effective and should NOT be used. If used the wrong way, it could cost you any chance that you may have had with that person. A woman may feel like they are like every other woman you talk to, using those lines over and over again. It's better to just be yourself and use pick up lines such as a simple "Hello". Smiling and saying hello is probably the best pick-up lines you could ever say.

If you can avoid these 4 common mistakes, you should have no problem flirting effectively with that special someone. Women/men love to flirt and be flirted with; you just have to be careful in the way you do it. In however you approach flirting, I wish you the very best of luck! Most people will get discouraged and give up when a woman or man gets rejected for flirting the wrong way. Don't let this be you! There are millions and millions of other fish in the sea.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Flirting Techniques: Body Language and Speech

Flirting, that wonderful behavior that puts two people together is a skill that everyone can learn to maximize. Obviously, flirting behavior involves both verbal and non-verbal communication. Essential to successful flirting is learning how to incorporate both of these to achieve success. First, let’s start with the basics.

Eye Contact

• An admiring glance is sufficient to indicate that you are interested.

• Avoid staring since this can appear threatening in a new relationship.

• You do not need to make eye contact continually while talking. Constant eye contact can make the other person nervous.

• When he is speaking, look at him more frequently than you did when you were speaking.

Body Posture

• Tilt head to one side to indicate your interest in what he is saying.

• If you are sitting, refrain from keeping your legs consistently crossed.

• Likewise, if you are sitting, cross and uncross your legs to bring attention to them.

• Refrain from crossing your arms tightly, even if you are nervous.

• Lean slightly towards the person rather than backwards or to the side.


• Flip your hair gently to maintain his attention.

• Twirl a small bit of your hair once or twice throughout the conversation. More than that will make you appear nervous.

• Bring your hands up to a small and silent clap in response to something clever that he has said.

• Bring your hand slightly downward to emphasize a point that you have made.

• Slightly extend an open palm to offer an invitation to agree with you.

• Toss your head back gently when you laugh to emphasize your delight.

• Nod your head occasionally to indicate agreement or continued interest, but avoid
multiple nods since they can be distracting.

Verbal Communication

• Use a light-hearted banter initially in the conversation to allow both of you time to relax.

• Chat the man up on general subjects initially, until you discover his interests. Then, focus on what he likes.

• Use a tone of voice that isn’t grating on the nerves, too loud for the situation, or too desperate in nature.

• Match your non-verbal cues to your verbal communication.
People tend to notice appearance, body language, and tone of voice prior to the style of speaking and the content of the conversation. Therefore, it isn’t so much what we say but how we say it.

The tone of voice, facial expressions, gestures, and body posture more than the words spoken indicate interest. The most successful flirt is often the well practiced flirt. Exercise caution, however, when flirting and be safe.