Archive for March, 2010

14 mar

Daylight Changing Time

JayForteOnce a year we move the clocks ahead. We lose an hour. A priceless hour. This time of year reminds me of how precious our time is.

I was up in New England visiting family this weekend. Sitting at the table we were reminiscing about so many years – jobs, dates, schools, awards, detention, cars; we talked for hours. We laughed about good choices and were embarrassed about bad choices. We remembered the times in our lives. We built these lives, day by day, hour by hour, moment by moment. Time allowed it.

In the last several months, Facebook has reconnected me to many people in my past – people from my grammar school, high school and college. In conversations with my grammar schoolmates, we realized it had been 35 year since we had spoken. Time gone by. Priceless time. Time we don’t get back.

Time, both vague and empirical, defines our lives. It is a unit of measure that guides us through our days and our lives. And we know from the outset, time for each of us will be limited. As Neil Armstrong says, “I believe every human has a finite number of heartbeats. I don’t intend to waste any of mine.”

It is therefore up to each of us to see the value in our time – not to waste it – but rather to treasure it, celebrate it and use it to help us develop the best life possible.

Time is a critical component of the formula for a successful life:

  • We must know ourselves – our talents, passions and interests (our true selves) – to know what makes us happy and what we are good at.
  • We must know our world, to know the canvas we have available to create our lives.
  • We use time to blend the two – our true selves and our world – to determine our unique fit – to create the best life possible.

Time allows this great life to unfold. Time is the enabler. But time is limited.

Consider the following ways to better use and treasure your time:

  1. Plan your day; this will help you prioritize your life events and get to the things that are important.
  2. Know yourself and know your world. Be constantly aware of what make you feel successful and happy. Build more of these into your day.
  3. Pay attention to your health; eat wisely and exercise to feel well each day.
  4. Build strong relationships; have loving and caring people in your life to share your time with.
  5. Create a list of the things you want to do in life – a wish list. Do as many as you can. It adds excitement, anticipation and energy to your time.

Daylight changing time is a reminder that life is not a dress rehearsal; this is all the time we have. And we should respect, care for and treasure our time. Many may complain about losing an hour of sleep, but really there are so many other things lost in this movement to daylight savings time; an hour of visiting a loved one, an hour of fitness, an hour reading and learning, an hour of travel, an hour of meditation, an hour of walking on the beach, an hour of family time, an hour of thinking time – another hour of progress in building an exceptional life.

Time doesn’t return. When used it is gone. Daylight changing time is a wakeup call. Commit to valuing time, and using it to develop your best life.

Jay Forte is a motivational speaker and performance consultant. He is the author of Fire Up! Your Employees and Smoke Your Competition, The Hunt for Opportunities Success Manual and the on-line resource Stand Out and Get Hired. He works to connect people to their talents and passions to work strong and live stronger. More information at www.LiveFiredUp.com.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jay Forte on March 14th, 2010 in Diet and Fitness, Family, General, Health, Relationships, Spirituality, Things We Love | 1 comment Read related posts in , , , , , ,

14 mar

The Art of Allowing

mike_robbinsA few months ago I got some specific feedback that it would serve me, my work, and my growth to start practicing the art of allowing in a more conscious and deliberate way. While I was familiar with the concept of allowing, I realized I had very little awareness or experience of it in actual practice.

As I looked more deeply at it, I realized that I had a judgment about the whole concept of “allowing.” It had always seemed weak, passive, lazy, or based on “luck” to me. I’ve always prided myself on being a hard worker, a “go-getter,” and someone who “makes things happen.” However, as I have recently come to realize – much of this has to do with a deep-seeded fear that if I ever slow down, stop pushing so hard, or simply expect things to just show up with ease – the whole “house of cards” of my life and my work will simply come crashing down around me. Can you relate?

Allowing, however, is an essential aspect of life and growth – as well as of our success and fulfillment. The first aspect of allowing has to do with us accepting things as they are. As author and teacher Byron Katie says, “When you argue with reality, you lose – but only 100% of the time.”

When we’re able to allow people, things, and situations to be as they are – without judging them, trying to fix them, or wanting to change them – we begin to tap into the immense power of allowing. Ironically and somewhat paradoxically, when we truly allow things and people to be exactly as they are, we open up a space for real change and transformation to occur (if that is what we want).

The deeper aspect of allowing has to do with us trusting, being patient, and having faith that what we want to manifest, create, and experience can and will show up in our lives as it is meant to. In other words, it’s an ability to allow things to happen and materialize, without us having to manipulate, dominate, or control other people or situations to make it happen. For those of us, myself included, who have a tendency to be control-freaks at times – this can be incredibly challenging.

The paradox that exists with allowing runs deep within us. So many of us were taught and believe “if it is to be, it’s up to me.” And while there is truth and wisdom in this philosophy, as many of us know, feeling as though we have to work hard, run fast, keep up, and make everything happen in our lives is exhausting and insatiable. No matter how hard we work, what we try to fix, or all of the changes we intend to make – if we don’t learn, practice, and ultimately master the art of allowing – true success and fulfillment will always elude us. Action is important, but we have to also learn to balance it out with our ability to allow.

Allowing takes faith, patience, and trust – three things that are essential for our own peace of mind and well-being in life, but are often not things we focus on, learn about, or are encouraged to practice in our intense, fast-paced, results oriented culture. The art of allowing is truly an art and is something that often goes against the grain and runs contrary to societal norms and pressures. It has to do with us remembering, as the well-known saying goes, “We’re human beings, not human doings.”

Here are a few things to think about and practice as you enhance your capacity and ability to allow with more ease in your life.

1) Ask yourself how you relate to the concept of “allowing.” Take some inventory of your own relationship this idea. How do you feel about it? How comfortable are you allowing things and people to be as they are, as well as allowing things to manifest with ease in your life? For many of us, this is something that we may understand, but may not practice. Tell the truth to yourself about how you relate to allowing and notice how this impacts your life – one way or another.

2) Pay attention to what you focus on in regards to your biggest goals and aspirations. In regards to the biggest goals, dreams, and aspirations in your life right now – how much of your attention and energy is focused on doing and how much is focused on allowing? While both doing and allowing are important, most of us put a disproportionate amount of attention on action. Increasing our focus on allowing and ultimately receiving, can be a magical, relaxing, and incredibly effective way for us to relate to our goals and dreams. This is often one of the big missing pieces in our desire for not only success, but more important, fulfillment.

3) Create an allowing practice. This is a simple practice you can do daily (like prayer, meditation, quiet reflection, affirmation, etc.) where you put your attention and awareness on allowing – accepting things as they are, trusting that things are working out as they are meant to, believing that the feelings, experiences, accomplishments, and outcomes you desire are on their way, and allowing yourself to receive these gifts and blessings with ease and gratitude. You may need to reach out to others for support, guidance, and feedback about creating or deepening an allowing practice that will work for you – but doing this is one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself (as well as to those around you).

Have fun with this and have compassion with yourself as well. For most of us, allowing is a lot easier to think about or talk about than it actually is to practice and embody in our lives. The more attention we put on it, however, the easier it gets. And, as we deepen our ability and our capacity to allow – our whole life can transform with ease, grace, and gratitude!

Mike Robbins is a sought-after motivational keynote speaker, coach, and the bestselling author of Focus on the Good Stuff (Wiley) and Be Yourself, Everyone Else is Already Taken (Wiley). More info – www.Mike-Robbins.com

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Mike Robbins on March 14th, 2010 in New Directions, Spirituality | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , , , , , ,

07 mar

Your “Half-Empty” Perspective Is Killing You

JayForteAttitude – it defines us. I remember working with a colleague who was chronically pessimistic. Whatever was said, he always found the negative. If it were a nice day, he would comment how bad weather was due. If we had success in the workplace, it was a matter of time before something failed. I chose to see the glass half full; he chose to see the glass half empty. I focused on gain, success, optimism and possibility; he focused on loss, failure, pessimism and shortage. He was a chronic downer; a vortex of negative energy. He was, however, a life lesson.

I wasn’t always optimistic. My background, like for many, taught me life was difficult; good will always be offset by bad – as if there were some required life balance of pain and pleasure. It was this colleague, however, who introduced me to seeing the negative and positive attributes in our responses, and noticing how they made me feel. His perspective reminded me of how brief life is and by focusing on the negative instead of the positive was a waste of time.

This started my interest in researching the impact of a positive attitude not only on a person’s success but on his physical and metal wellbeing. Dr. Esther Sternberg’s states in her book, The Balance Within, The Science Connecting Health and Emotions, “Perhaps if we could relearn a new set of associations, turn negative into positive, we could in some sense consciously control our health.” She continues, “The more optimistic the person, the less an event was perceived as stressful, the more robust were their immune-cell responses.” There is a direct correlation between positive emotions and a strong immune system.

This is further explained in Dr. Robert Sapolsky’s book, Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers. He presents when we are in periods of calm, our body’s systems work as they should – the heart slows allowing normal blood flow to all of the routine life systems – digestive, circulatory, excretory, reproductive. We maintain our bodies internally – we stay healthy.

However, when we encounter an event (including an emotion) that activates our fight-or-flight mechanism, different biological functions respond. Blood is called from the maintenance systems and is now directed to organs that will increase our ability to survive (blood vessels are constricted raising the speed and force of the heart’s contraction, widening air passages to the lungs, dilating the pupils for increased perception, releasing glucose into the blood for quick energy, and shifting blood from the intestinal tract to the heart and muscles – paraphrased from How We Live by Sherwin Nuland). This reaction suppresses our immune system; if sustained, this impacts our health.

It is important to note is that a negative attitude can activate the fight-or-flight response. So the office downer, the family curmudgeon, or the negative energy friend – those who are constantly focused on the “half-empty” perspective – live in a perpetual state of fight or flight. This activates the fight-or-flight systems and suppresses the immune system. Being a cynic, grump or pessimist is bad for your health.

This ties in directly with Ariane de Bonvoisin’s first principle of successfully handling change, “People who successfully navigate change have positive beliefs.” This positivity activates your health, your greater thinking and stronger positive emotions. Positivity and optimism actually create a healthier life.

Positive beliefs come from you – you may not be able to control the things that happen to you but you can control how you respond to them. You can choose to see “half-full” – upbeat, optimistic and confident – or “half-empty” – down, pessimistic and unsure.

Consider these ways to build a more positive perspective:

  1. Notice when you become negative and immediately focus on something positive. Have others help you see your behavior.
  2. Read a power quote or an inspirational passage to start your day on a positive tone.
  3. Create an upbeat “break” during the day. Focus on 3 things that have gone well. Celebrate them. I like to use a “what went well today” list.
  4. Choose your friends wisely; associate with positive and confident people.

To make the point, here are some great half-empty/half-full perspectives from the website www.businessballs.com.

  • The project manager/engineer says the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.
  • The bar fly says is not about whether the glass is half full or half empty, it’s about who is paying for the next round.
  • The consultant says let’s examine the question, prepare a strategy for an answer, and all for a daily rate of…
  • The worrier frets that the remaining half will evaporate by tomorrow.
  • The fanatic thinks the glass is completely full, even though it isn’t.
  • The entrepreneur sees the glass as undervalued by half its potential.
  • The computer specialist says that next year the glass capacity will double and will cost half the price.
  • The Buddhist says don’t worry, remember the glass is already broken.
  • The personal coach knows that the glass goes from full to empty depending on the circumstances, and reminds the drinker that he can always fill the glass when he wishes.
  • The grammarian says that while the terms half-full and half-empty are colloquially acceptable the glass can technically be neither since both full and empty are absolute states and therefore are incapable of being halved or modified in any way.

You control your attitude. Know yourself; choose to be positive and upbeat. It is great for your happiness and your health.

Jay Forte is a motivational speaker and performance consultant. He is the author of Fire Up! Your Employees and Smoke Your Competition, The Hunt for Opportunities Success Manual and the on-line resource, Stand Out and Get Hired. He is working on his new book, Work Strong, Live Stronger. He works to connect people to their talents and passions to live fired up! More information at www.LiveFiredUp.com.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jay Forte on March 7th, 2010 in Ariane, Career, Family, General, Health, Personal Stories, Things We Love | 1 comment Read related posts in , , , , , , ,

06 mar

Who Do You Think You Are?

mike_robbinsSometimes when I’m about to take a big risk, go for something important, or “step out” in a bold way in my life, I notice the judgmental question, “Who do you think you are?, will pop up in my head. Does this ever happen to you?

This is one of the many ways that the feelings of “not good enough” or “unworthy” show up in our lives and get in the way of our success, fulfillment, and authenticity. Sadly, as most of us know, this question doesn’t come from our true self; it comes from our “Gremlin” – that little monster in our head whose only job is to keep us out of perceived danger. The more we listen to our Gremlin, the more allow him or her to sabotage our life.

However, this question, “Who do you think you are?, while often asked in a negative, critical way and something that we allow to stop us from doing, saying, and going for important things in life – is also a very important question for us to ask and answer honestly. When we look at it on deeper level, we see that our answer to this question has a lot to do with how we experience life, in general.

How life is for us has a lot less to do with our circumstances or situations, and much more to do with how we relate to them and ultimately the thoughts we have. Some of the most powerful thoughts we think and the ones that have the most impact on us are the thoughts we have about ourselves (i.e. who we think we are).

Each of us has a “story” about ourselves and our lives. These stories are often dramatic, funny, scary, inspiring, sad, intense, boring, enjoyable, tragic, and more (usually a combination of many of these things). In most cases, the story we have about ourselves changes a bit – depending on how we’re feeling about life and ourselves at any given time.

One of the things we sometimes forget, however, is that we’re the author of the story of our life – not simply the main character. We often think that our story has to do with all of the things that have “happened” to us, the qualities we were born with or have cultivated, the stuff we’ve done or haven’t done yet, etc. But, when we remember that our story is a function of our thoughts, most specifically the thoughts we have about ourselves, we can be empowered to consciously transform not just our “story,” but our life as a whole.

Here are a few things to think about and do to enhance your thoughts about yourself, and therefore enhance your experience of life:

1) Notice when your feelings of “not good enough” or “unworthy” show up – In other words, pay attention to when the question, “Who do you think you are?” stops you in your tracks and takes you out of the game of your life. As we’re able to notice this, be honest about, and have some compassion for ourselves, we can take our power back from our Gremlin in those moments and step more fully into who we really are.

2) Ask yourself more deeply, “Who do you think you are?” – Go deeper with this question, beyond the judgment and really inquiry into how you relate to yourself. What’s your story? The more honest we can be about the story we have about ourselves, the easier it is for us to acknowledge it, own it, and ultimately change it. Remember, these stories are not “true,” they are simply our interpretations, judgments, and beliefs. We created them, so we have the power to transform them at any time.

3) Upgrade your “story” about yourself – In the specific areas of your life where your story is not empowering, inspiring, or fulfilling – see if you’re willing and able to “upgrade” it in an authentic way. This basically means we change our thoughts, words, and feelings about it, genuinely. Because we often get so attached to our stories and tend to defend them passionately, this “upgrading” process can be challenging for many of us. It sometimes takes support, feedback, and coaching from others in order for us to move beyond our story and remember that we have the power to upgrade it whenever we’re ready.

Who we think we are is one of the most foundational aspects of how we relate to life and ourselves. As Henry Ford said in his famous quote, “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” This simple quote is so wise and profound. And, whether we think we’re great or we’re not, we’re always “right” – it’s a function of who we truly think we are.

Mike Robbins is a sought-after motivational keynote speaker, coach, and the bestselling author of Focus on the Good Stuff (Wiley) and Be Yourself, Everyone Else is Already Taken (Wiley). More info – www.Mike-Robbins.com

Posted by Mike Robbins on March 6th, 2010 in General, New Directions | 1 comment Read related posts in , , , , , ,

02 mar

Your life priorities can guide you in your choices about your personal style

KathiBurnsCreating a polished and successful image goes a lot deeper than outward appearances. Something happens when you put on the perfect clothes for your body type, coloring and lifestyle. As a stylist, I witness client transformations and success first hand as they learn how to redefine their outward image. Here is an example of someone who knew instinctively that it was time to make change.

A dot.com client was in the process of launching his new venture and also searching for companionship and love. After spending several months in the isolation of product creation, it was time for him to step out into the world and unveil his product and himself as a successful entrepreneur. Mike wanted to create an image that reflected how he now perceived himself and his new venture. He was, in essence, redefining himself as a confident professional and self-sufficient entrepreneur.

After clearing out his old wardrobe and making room for the new, he began learning what to he could wear to portray his new image and lifestyle. After learning to apply the principles we had discussed during our image sessions, he wrote,

“I realized I had . . . been wasting gobs of money on clothes that weren’t making me look better. Not only do I now have a wardrobe full of clothes that are flattering, I also have the knowledge to make more savvy purchases . . . [and] my new girlfriend (who was a runway model for Ralph Lauren) has complimented me on my fashion sense more than once.”

For Mike, wearing the right clothes went deeper than just looking good and saving money. His wardrobe has bolstered his confidence and given him courage to pursue his dreams with no holds barred. Who wouldn’t want to proclaim that his girlfriend was a model for Ralph Lauren? With the right wardrobe and understanding a few basic principles about how to dress to enhance his image, he now has the confidence to present himself and his new business boldly to the world.

What is the life that you wish to create? Do you want to be physically fit or more successful? Maybe your goal is to find a life partner or become more adventuresome? Get clear on the current top priorities for your life. These will guide you in your choices about your personal style.

This is an excerpt from the new book How to Master Your Muck.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Kathi Burns on March 2nd, 2010 in Career, New Directions, Personal Stories, Things We Love, Uncategorized | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , , , , , ,

02 mar

The clothes you wear can sabotage or support what you want to create in your life.

KathiBurnsI agree with Nick Arrojo’s comments on February 18th about the subtle effects on your life regarding how you present yourself to the world.

Your image is created by your thoughts and feelings about yourself. If you have never taken the time to pause and figure out how you feel about yourself and how you want to be viewed by the world, it will be reflected in your wardrobe. The clothes you wear can sabotage or support what you want to create in your life.

Clothes not only reflect how we feel about ourselves, they also impact how others react to us. Whether you are a man or a woman, you are judged by the clothes that you wear. This is a reality. The power of a first impression is real and not disappearing anytime soon. This might seem cruel and unreasonable until you realize why this happens.

We don’t make quick character judgments because we are malicious. We do it because it is one of our most primal instincts, self-protection. We are programmed to determine as quickly as possible whether the person next to us is trustworthy, or if we should take a flight-or-fight stance. We simply rely on visual clues to determine whether we are safe.

During this instinctive process, we can’t help but make other judgments about professionalism, financial status and personality. Knowing this, it makes sense that we should try to appear as polished as possible. It is not a secret that a successful and positive personal image is a direct result of the clothes we wear.

Creating a successful image goes a lot deeper than outward appearances. Clothes change the way we view ourselves. Think about your wardrobe for a minute. Almost everyone has a lucky piece of clothing. When we wear that item our attitude throughout the day is more self-assured. That is why we really enjoy wearing our “lucky” outfits. We feel happier and more successful. With the proper elements in your wardrobe, you will feel empowered every day as you get dressed and head out into the world.

This is an excerpt from Kathi’s book, How to Master Your Muck.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Kathi Burns on March 2nd, 2010 in Career, General, New Directions, Things We Love, Uncategorized | 2 comments Read related posts in , , , , , , ,

01 mar

Our Cranky Critic

SaskiaShakinSelf-Talk & Public Speaking: What One Reveals About the Other

The stories we make up about ourselves will either support us or derail us. And most of us are masters of enabling our Cranky Critic—you know, the one who lives inside our head and stomps on our dreams. Our Cranky Critic always sounds as if she has woken up on the wrong side of bed, murmuring sweet nothings, such as:

“I’m not smart enough.”

“I’m not slim enough.”

“I can’t cope anymore.”

“I’ll never be good at ________.”

“I’ll never make enough money.”

“I can’t pursue my dreams because ________.”

“Life is not meant to give us pleasure.”

“My duties prevent me from ________.”

The list is infinite. And the important mantra here is to keep reminding yourself that, indeed, these offerings are “sweet NOTHINGS!” Remember, too, that none of these complaints, excuses, facts hold any weight when we decide that this negative self-talk serves no one—least of all ourselves. Yes, I said decide.

For the attitudes we hold are choices. They may not always feel like choices because some of them have been ingrained since early childhood, and so we think we were born feeling this way. Some have been adopted as we rub up against the world and see that we fall short when compared to those whose life seems easy. But know that how we see the world, how we interact with others, how we cope with what life throws our way are all in our control. And that control is to be found in the stories that we circulate in our head and in our heart.

The stories that we tell ourselves—both positive and negative—will seep out in our interactions with others. And this applies whether we are speaking to one, to several, or to a room full of people. To illustrate my point, consider this:

Have you ever met someone, even briefly, and felt an ease, a genuine connection with that person for no reason at all? And conversely, have you ever met someone and been immediately turned off by their presence? In either case, your reaction may not have had anything to do with what the person said but rather with how that person felt to you. The feeling within is what gets projected without—usually inadvertently. So, if you left that interaction not feeling good around that person, chances are that person did not feel good about himself.

A fable from the East tells of an emperor and a Zen monk who came face to face for the first time. The emperor ruled over a kingdom that practiced Buddhism and the monk was eager to meet with him, looking forward to sharing tales of enlightenment.

But when they met, the emperor decided to test the monk by saying to him: “When you look at me, what do you see?”

“I see a Buddha,” answered the monk. And what do you see when you look at me?”

“I see a pig!” countered the emperor. Waiting to see the monk’s reaction, he said no more.

The monk pondered for a moment, then said: “A Buddha sees a Buddha; a pig sees a pig!”

In the West, we speak of projection. We blame others for what is not right within ourselves. We complain about outer conditions when it is really the inner state that pains us. This is especially true when we contemplate any form of speaking in public. We are certain we will look foolish; forget what we want to say; reveal our inadequacies; the audience will see through us; they will be bored. And on, and on, and on . . . . This is the home turf of our Cranky Critic!

The fact is: NO audience shows up wishing to be bored. No one is out to get us. No one wishes us to fail and embarrass ourselves. They dread our worst nightmares as much as we do. They show up wanting to be engaged; wanting to be entertained; wanting to like us; wanting to be inspired.

What is required of us as speakers is not necessarily to be brilliant, articulate, and commanding: what is required of us is to be real, authentic, genuine. It is our humanity that connects us to those listening, not our brilliance. It is our joy and our passion that persuade, not our erudition. It is when we are having a good time that our audience has a good time, too. This seems so obvious when stated explicitly. Why then do we have such a hard time believing it? (The Cranky Critic strikes again!)

The Cranky Critic perched on our shoulder, nay saying our dreams, creates a groove: and as this groove gets deeper, it becomes a bad habit—for some, an addiction. Bad habits keep us focused on our shortcomings and not our strengths. We are used to thinking negatively. It becomes our default position. And so I say to you, “If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got!”

Allow yourself to shuffle your thoughts around. Think instead of what excites you, what you love, what gets your juices flowing. Share that with your audience. Make your topic something you love, think of your audience as someone you love. Then it is inevitable: they will love you back. For you always get back what you put out.

In sum, passion conquers all: it will squelch the cranky critic, choking him off before he can open his mouth. Passion will stifle him just as he has stifled your dreams. When you allow your passion to speak, you produce such positive energy in yourself that those around you cannot help but be affected. Joy is contagious. So too, negativity. Think of your internal self-talk as a virus: you can infect others with your passion or your doubts.

The choice really is yours. Your own decision to pursue your passion is step one. But then follows the work (or should I say play). Being passionate about your message is mandatory, but so is a theme, and a point. Passion has a tendency to ramble; a talk needs to be designed. It needs to feel comfortable to the ear—not the eye. The good news is that once you have tapped into your passion, the rest falls into place naturally. I have seen this over and over again in my clients.

So the best advice I can offer you is to bury your own Cranky Critic. Whenever you hear those old, familiar tapes start to play, say to him: “Thank you for sharing. But I have other things to do right now.”

Your critic will not enjoy being brushed aside and perhaps will clamor for more attention. But as with any stubborn child, stick to your position—even if Cranky Critic throws a temper tantrum. You will substitute a new habit for the old. The groove will be filled by joy, not fear. The joy will propel you forward, faster and faster, and before long, Cranky Critic will be left in the dust with no place to live.

By Saskia Shakin
Author, More Than Words Can Say: The Making of Inspired Speakers
www.TheKeynoteCoach.com

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Saskia Shakin on March 1st, 2010 in New Directions | No comments