Archives for category: Inspiration

Image result for thoughts become things

In the Book of Proverbs, chapter 23, verse 7 states that “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.”

Currently, I’m reading The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy. This interesting book promotes the notion that we can influence our destiny by learning how to bring the incredible force of the subconscious mind under control.  We can literally change our lives by changing our beliefs.

As I read on, this writing makes me reflect on other excellent books that promote the same “thought process“…

  • Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.  Hill asserts that desire, faith and persistence can propel one to great heights if one can suppress negative thoughts and focus on long-term goals.
  •  The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale. Peale suggests that thinking about certain things will make them appear in one’s life.
  •  As a Man Thinketh by James Allen. Allen prescribes that the proper use and application of thought leads to happy and beautiful outcomes in life.
  • The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, based on the pseudo-scientific law of attraction which claims that thoughts can change the world directly.
  • Dynamic Laws of Prosperity by Catherine Ponder. Ponder touts the formula that desire + visualization and affirmation = success.

Interestingly, I have personally seen these tactics and strategies deliver amazing results in my life…and genuinely buy-in to the belief that this stuff is real!

You are in control of your thoughts, no one else. You hold that key to your life’s condition. Your thoughts influence your outcomes. So here’s the self-reflection challenge…are the thoughts about your circumstances and situation constructive or destructive?

Keep them positive, affirmative and allow your subconscious to help create your better future life! I would hope that you experience great results as well.

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Early in my business career, a mentor introduced me to the notion of “infectious enthusiasm.” My interpretation of that powerful concept is that any person who comes in contact with me could become inspired as a result of the positive attitude, energy and demeanor that I displayed.

Not only did I love the sound of that phrase, but more importantly, I realized   that acting in that manner would enhance the lives of those around me.

Living life with an enthusiastic attitude and subsequently being an inspiration to those who you come in contact with…well, that’s the way that I strive to exist.

A good barometer for a self-check here: do others chase after you knowing that you create joy, or are they running away from you as fast as they can?

Image result for attitude of gratitude images tony robbins

Attitude by definition is a settled way of thinking or feeling about someone or something, typically reflected in a person’s behavior.

Over the years, I have intentionally experimented with attempting to behave in an “optimal” fashion, primarily driven by my interpretation, and consequent attitude, toward any given situation.

My personal endeavor toward consistently demonstrating a constructive, energetic attitude dates back to initial engagements with Tony Robbins, via his Personal Power program. Robbins challenges us to improve our lives by asking daily quality questions, such as “What am I grateful for?” or “What could I be grateful for?” That process moved me toward the pursuit of living my life with an attitude of gratitude.”

Genuinely appreciating the good things we do have certainly beats spending time wallowing in pity about “What’s not great yet!”  There will always be someone else who is wealthier or healthier.  An honorable mission is to live in the moment, cherishing what we have been blessed with, and pursuing life with enthusiasm and energy.

The ultimate lesson that was reinforced throughout my experiment was that I, and only I, have the ability to choose and control the way I think, feel, act…and ultimately impact others. Doing so with that “attitude of gratitude” has certainly made the journey much more enjoyable…for myself and those around me!

 

 

 

Image result for never ever give up

This philosophical strategy towards our pursuit of life while we’re experiencing our brief stay here on this earth has been advocated by numerous individuals, ranging from basketball coach Jim Valvano to Sir Winston Churchill.

I vividly recall the time in my life when I quit, gave up.  During my Freshman and Sophomore years at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, I played intercollegiate golf.  During a four-day individual tournament one summer, I had made it through the first three days quite nicely, and positioned myself for a decent finish on the final day.

Day four turned cold, rainy, windy and miserable.  I found myself approaching the eighth hole, shooting a terrible score, frustrated, hating the elements, feeling chilled and ultimately quitting after that front-nine, withdrawing from the tournament.

To say it differently, I QUIT after completing 63 of 72 holes in the event. That felt okay at the time. As it turned out, many of the competitors struggled that day!  Had I persevered and completed the event, I would have actually finished in a top-ten position.

That triggered a passion inside to never ever give up or quit again. And, driven by this painful memory, to the best of my knowledge, I believe I’ve remained true to that commitment???

It has been noted that it seems to be human nature for most people to quit or “take a break” right at the moment when we are about to achieve that breakthrough or achievement we’ve been pursuing. What a shame…

Having personally felt the pain of giving up when not realizing how close I was to achievement cemented (in my mind) the importance of staying relentless in our pursuits.

As we continue to move forward in this fast-paced, ever-changing world, let’s challenge ourselves to conquer, rise to the occasion, stay optimistic and realize our true potential every single day of our lives…remaining persistent and never, ever, ever giving up.

 

As we head into what will prove to be an exciting 2018, I wanted to reblog this annual practice reminder in hopes that it will prove to be helpful to readers…

As each year ends, my wife and I go through an exercise wherein we review our journals from the prior year, reflect on what we have, and in some cases have not, accomplished.

The end goal is to establish what our “top-ten highlight reel” might look like for the year gone by…we are typically amazed by all that has been achieved.

A post-exercise routine of comparing our respective “top-tens” is not only fun, but also provides a barometer for how well our values and beliefs are aligned, i.e. what’s truly important to each of us. It further reinforces the many blessings we have in our lives and the people and events that are shaping our destiny.

Further, this practice helps to create positive feelings and an inner-state that tends to energize a constructive planning effort for what we would like to realize during the upcoming year.

If nothing else, take time to reflect on your core values and guiding principles; and reignite your internal flame by establishing some meaningful, challenging and achievable goals to shoot for entering this new year.

In his seminal work,  The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Dr. Stephen Covey introduced his philosophy on empathic communication…Seek first to understand, then to be understood.

Dr. Covey notes that there are five types of listening: Ignoring, Pretending, Selective, Attentive and Empathic.

Exceptional communicators strive to achieve that pinnacle stage of becoming an empathic listener, i.e. “putting yourself in the other person’s proverbial shoes”. This means paying attention to the level that we truly understand their feelings and emotions.

The physical act of hearing is different that the mental act of listening. Listening with empathy requires a concerted effort to commit your undivided attention to the speaker. Sounds easy, does hard!

Fortunately, we can develop the skills to become better listeners, and communicators.

One technique that has helped me improve in this area is to conscientiously “listen with my eyes.” By maintaining comfortable and consistent eye contact with the speaker, it helps me to focus on them and to better concentrate on the message they are trying to deliver.

listen eyes

 

Bruce the BossWhile observing Bruce Springsteen’s E-Street Band’s recent induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I observed “The Boss” as a genuine and caring leader in action.

Bruce exhibited multiple leadership traits, including:

  1. demonstrate great passion for what you’re doing and how you do it
  2. create a fun working environment for all stakeholders involved
  3. surround yourself with the best talent available (his E-Street band includes awesomely skilled musicians)
  4. exhibit non-stop high energy that creates infectious enthusiasm
  5. be unselfish and empower your team to perform their part
  6. appreciate and acknowledge the importance of everyone on the team

Not surprisingly, the majority of this tribe has been together for decades, following the same leader with an unrivaled camaraderie and success that most leadership could only dream of achieving!

While reading the June 2014 edition of Men’s Health magazine, I came across an article by CNN New Day anchor Chris Cuomo, son of former New York governor Mario Cuomo.

My followers know that I typically focus on leadership in business, and as I read the insights from Chris in “What My Pop Taught Me”, it dawned on me that the “life lessons” that Chris had learned from his father had an amazing correlation to ideals that can easily be applied toward great leadership.

Here’s a recap of those 5 ideals, and their key foundations.

  • It’s okay to ask for help.
    • Find someone with knowledge and help that you can benefit from.
  • Work hard at everything.
    • Hard work is a requirement, not an extra.
  • Listen to that voice inside.
    • Follow your gut, even if it means being unpopular.
  • Don’t wallow in self-pity.
    • Trouble will come, you will have failures. You can’t control that, but what you can control is how you handle it!
  • Always show compassion.
    • Dedicate your energies to something bigger than yourself.

Cuomo

Maintaining a positive work environment goes a long way toward improved productivity, energy, employee retention…and having fun at what you’re doing.

Leadership includes an obligation to create enthusiasm, despite what may be occurring in either your personal life, professional world, or both!  On some days, you may have life challenges that potentially drain you and make it hard to “plug it in” as that high energy role model.

When I find myself approaching a less-than-desirable emotional state, realizing the negative effect that has on myself as well as those around me, I attempt to catch myself and quickly “recalibrate.”

This entails a simple ten second “time-out” where I relax my body, take a few deep breaths, and change my thought pattern toward all that I have and all that I am blessed with.

The quote below is a good reminder for anyone when they find themselves going in a negative direction.

Koenig

 

 

 

 

Bruce the BossWhile observing Bruce Springsteen’s E-Street Band’s recent induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I observed “The Boss” as a genuine and caring leader in action.

Bruce exhibited multiple leadership traits, including:

  1. demonstrate great passion for what you’re doing and how you do it
  2. create a fun working environment for all stakeholders involved
  3. surround yourself with the best talent available (his E-Street band includes awesomely skilled musicians)
  4. exhibit non-stop high energy that creates infectious enthusiasm
  5. be unselfish and empower your team to perform their part
  6. appreciate and acknowledge the importance of everyone on the team

Not surprisingly, the majority of this tribe has been together for decades, following the same leader with an unrivaled camaraderie and success that most leadership could only dream of achieving!