8 Steps Process to overcoming your obstacles

A warm greeting to all my readers :)

‘If you can find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere.’ — Frank A. Clark

Have you ever experienced difficulties and challenges before achieving one of your goals?

Have you ever appreciated something that came easily to you? Or did you appreciate it more when you sacrificed and made a real effort to achieve your goal?

Have you ever heard of the lottery winners who are worse off today than they were before they won?

They squandered their winnings because it held no value for them, they didn’t have to struggle through the obstacles, challenges and problems that self-made millionaires face, as a result even though their dream had materialised they weren’t able to hold onto it. As the saying goes ‘Easy come, easy go.’

It’s not so surprising when you think about how you feel when you achieve your goals easily or when you achieve them by overcoming obstacles.

greater the obstacle...

Which process gives you more satisfaction?

satisfaction-

I recently experienced a tough period achieving my goals; I overcome these by working on my mindset which led to this article.

I hope it helps you to deal with the obstacles that you will likely face as you progress along your journey towards the attainment of your objectives. :)

To commence, setting goals is the first step… achieving them is the second step… and surely, it is at this second step that most of us stumble. We stumble not because the goal is unachievable, but rather because of unexpected obstacles and challenges that arise along the journey that make the goal seem unachievable.

benefits of setting goals on blackboard

It is important to understand that every goal we set naturally comes with a plethora of landmines that are attached to that goal which show up in our lives as a set of hurdles, tests and problems that we must surpass in order to get to our end destination. In fact, unless we successfully manoeuvre through these difficulties and overcome them, then we will fail to learn the valuable lessons that are required to help us grow towards each stage and most importantly keep our goal when we get there. 

obstacles zig ziglar

There are three types of obstacles that you will likely face.

Firstly, personal barriers, which are related to your psychology, behaviour and state-of-mind, include limiting habits, debilitating emotions, fears and beliefs that prevent us from moving forward because of the negative thinking, inhibiting our ability to make effective decisions and undertake appropriate action that would help us create the momentum we need to get to our desired outcome.

Secondly, environmental difficulties, these are unexpected external occurrences and circumstances that we have little control over and we are usually ill-prepared to deal with these effectively. However, if we research and set in place contingency plans, we stand a greater chance of pre-empting potential pitfalls and even influencing the outcome.

To do this, begin by following Murphy’s Law:

Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong at the worst possible time, all of the time when you least expect it. 

 murphy's law

So what are you going to do about it?

 

When you plan for the future, you gather a better understanding of the possible scenarios and consequences of your decisions and actions. Planning also gives you insight into additional resources you may need to help you overcome environmental obstacles that you could face on the journey ahead. :)

Plan-Design

Thirdly, social obstructions are related to people who either do no cooperate, sabotage you, or are incompetent and unable to fulfill the responsibilities assigned to them. Again it’s essential to forward plan and ensure that you clarify your needs adequately, your knowledge thoroughly and your instructions carefully. It also helps to develop strong bonds and relationships with the people you rely on most, safeguarding any future breakdown in communication. However don’t confuse this with trying to control people’s behaviour, decisions and actions. Instead subtly influence people and understand their needs, motives and desires. Only in this way will you successfully improve your chances of maneuvering through the social obstacles in your life.

TAKE ACTION NOW: Identify if any of these obstacles are currently preventing you from getting what you want most out of life, and choose today to take control of your thought patterns and begin making far more effective decisions. :)

effective-decision-making

As a coach, I often work with clients who are struggling to overcome personal and business obstacles. They don’t know what to do, where to begin or how to move forward. In such instances, I will ask them a series of questions that help them gain a new perspective and understanding about their circumstances. As a result they begin to unlock hidden resources they never realized they had. :)

life's challenges

I have listed below the ‘8 Steps Process to overcome your obstacles’ and integrated them with specific questions which will help you overcome your obstacles too:

STEP 1. Question the Problem

question

What are the indications that this is a problem for you?

How do you know this is accurate?

STEP 2. Question the Origins of the Problem

questions & qnswers

How did all this start?

Who or what perpetuates this problem?

STEP 3. Identify the Details

details

When did it happen?

How did it happen?

Where did it happen?

STEP 4. Determine the Consequences

Value_Graphic

What would happen if you ignored it?

When could it become a bigger problem?

What could lead to this specific outcome?

How does this affect you?

How does this affect others?

How does this affect your external life?

What other problems might be caused by resolving this obstacle?

STEP 5. Take Control

take control

Whose behaviour do you control?

What aspects of this problem can you control?

What aspects of this problem can’t you control?

How must you respond to what you can’t control?

STEP 6. Identify the Positives

positive

What is happening that is good?

What would you like to have continue to happen?

STEP 7. Gain Perspective

two points perspectives

What are your assumptions about this?

How are your assumptions contributing to the problem?

What is another perspective you haven’t considered?

Who has successfully overcome this problem?

What can you learn from this person?

STEP 8. Expand Your Options & Take Decisive Action

Just-Do-It (1)

What could you do differently?

Who could assist you?

Where haven’t you looked for a solution?

What action can I take to solve this obstacle?

How will you know when this problem has been resolved?

What is your criteria for success?

Remember, obstacles are just ‘things’ that are there to teach, strengthen and fortify you for the journey that lies ahead. We must therefore not view them as insurmountable problems that will prevent us from achieving our goals, but rather as small, and sometimes large, stepping stones that are mandatory ‘lessons’ we need to pass in order to obtain our Ph.D. in Goal Achievement. :)

obstacles m jordan

And finally, it is important to remind ourselves of the indispensable lesson that many former Lottery winners have found out the hard way, that there is only one thing worse than being poor, and that is ‘being rich and then being poor once again’. 

During the past years, this is the lesson that I have most appreciated, as I have learnt it by paying the most expensive price:

‘Take time to learn the lessons that life throws your way, because these lessons will be critical to your success as you move forward into the future.’ Viv :)

life-lessons

‘If you can find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere.’ – Frank A. Clark

overcome obstacles

Obstacles are placed in our way

To successfully overcoming your obstacles! :)

Viv :)

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7 Lessons from Albert Einstein’s School of Hard Knocks

Hello to all my readers, :)

 

Have you ever wondered which school is classified as the best for success? 

What is the real secret of successful people?

Have you ever thought how come most successful people seem to go from one success to another without obstacles?

 

‘The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear.‘ – Herbert Agar

We often associate certain names with the characteristic of excellence. David Beckham with football, Tim Berners-Lee who invented the World Wide Web and Pablo Picasso with art.

What if you had to name the genius of the 20th century?

Without a doubt, Albert Einstein would be nominated.  :) Why?

Albert-Einstein-simple

Although we know him as one of the smartest men ever born, at school he was average at best. He shunned certain classes for the mediocrity of education and mocked teachers who were irritated by his lack of obedience. His Greek grammar teacher, Joseph Degenhart, achieved immortality in the history books through insisting that ‘nothing would ever become of you.’ Later, when Einstein was told it would be best if he left the school, Degenhart explained, ‘Your presence in the class destroys the respect of the students.’ Disgusted by the rote teaching, Einstein quit high school at the age of fifteen. The rest is history. :)

This man of great scientific feats was also a man of noble heart and uncanny wisdom gained from the school of hard knocks. He often struggled to pay bills until the age of 26 when he wrote three papers that revolutionized our world.

Is it the type of school that defined a person’s charisma and intelligence?

What are Albert Einstein’s 7 lessons from the School of Hard Knocks that characterise  successful people?

Lesson # 1  Invest in the success of others.

albert-einstein-quotes Invest in suc

In his famous essay, ‘The world as I see it’, Albert Einstein wrote: ‘A hundred times every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labours of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving…’ :)

Those who succeed in life understand that success comes to those who make the conscious effort every day to give back to their family, friends and the community. When we invest our life energy into ensuring the success of others, our reciprocity encourages our own success. For example through blogging, I have found when I try to uplift others by sharing my experience and knowledge, I too receive positivity and connection from countless people who take the time to visit my blog and to comment on my articles. :)

Lesson # 2  Never stop growing.

Albert_Einstein_Message Never stop growing

‘Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.’- Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein’s dislike for conventional schooling never had any influence on his passion for learning. Throughout his life he passionately explored nature and its vastness to seek answers to mysteries that intrigued his mind. A life of solitude and self-study made him into the eminent scientist we recognise.

In our life we learn by meeting different people, by exploring our ideas to solve the common issues and by relentless desire to improve our way of life. Personally, I have learned many lessons of life after I left the school.

Lesson # 3  Your life is limited by the limits of your thoughts.

AlbertEinstein limited

‘Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.’ – Albert Einstein

We are educated to consider life with logic. We learn how to get from A to B with merit but we equally abhor thoughts of charting our own course to get from A to B. We are taught to excel at knowledge that already exists. We are infused with the fear of self-doubt to even consider an alternative path.

History has shown that those who contributed the most to mankind were the ones who defied the accepted knowledge of the masses. They dared to imagine what was considered impossible at the time. For example, the 6th century BC Greek mathematician Pythagoras said that the Earth was round and in the 3rd century BC Greek astronomer Aristarchus said that the Earth revolved around the sun. In both cases their ideas were rejected as preposterous.

‘Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.’
– Confucius

Lesson # 4  Simplify everything you do.

Albert einstein simplify

‘If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.’ – Albert Einstein

Life is simple and those who succeed definitely master the art of simplicity in everything that they passionately do. Warren Buffet was once asked why he hadn’t invested in Microsoft despite being a close friend of Bill Gates. He answered ‘I don’t invest if I don’t understand the underlying business.’ It’s a simple answer but one that Buffet adheres to and it has served him well. :)

James Michener, in his memoir, The World Is My Home, revealed the secret his work when he wrote: ‘Good writing…consists of trying to use ordinary words to achieve extraordinary results.’ :)

All of our wisdom and knowledge dies a horrible death if we do not possess the deftness of expressing our knowledge in simple words to the rest of the world.

Lesson # 5 Live a simple Life.

Alb einstein live a simple life

In his famous essay, ‘The world as I see it’, Albert Einstein wrote, ‘The trite objects of human efforts — possessions, outward success, luxury — have always seemed to me contemptible.’

One of the myths of our society is that ‘more’ will make us ‘happier’. We invest our life energy to possess lifeless possessions. We are educated to foster consumption with the mantra of – ‘The more, the better.’ We are educated to have a great job. A great job requires luxuries to fulfill our outlandish desire to impress others. Before we realize it, we mortgage our freedom to the possessions that bring more sorrow and inner grief in a vain hope to show off to the masses. A life of happiness and inner peace rests upon the virtue of simplicity.

Seldom do schools teach or promote the value of living a simple life or the value of living within our means. The current subprime mortgage crisis is a wakeup call for all of us. It is madness to accumulate more possessions when we cannot afford them in the vain hope that they will make us happy.  It becomes an endless loop of self-pity. Feeling part of something greater than ourselves and having what we need brings a life of contentment. :)

Lesson # 6  Never quit!

Alb Eins never quit

‘It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.’ – Albert Einstein

Our conventional education rewards those who succeed in exhibiting their knowledge of books. Students with the ability to memorise rather than the power of creativity are rewarded for their stupendous bookish knowledge. Our dislike of failure comes from the years of schooling that abhors failure. It’s the fear of failure that limits our thoughts and restricts our imagination. Albert Einstein’s passion for physics and his dislike for conventional schooling allowed him to become the greatest scientist of the 20th century. History has countless examples of people who never ceased to imagine, question and discover what intrigued their minds. Success comes to those in abundance who dare to imagine and find solutions that would benefit mankind. These brave people understand the value of failure to gain knowledge that can lead to the peaks of success. :)

Lesson # 7  We are creatures of our values and character.

Alb EIns value and character

‘Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value.’ – Albert Einstein

Every bookstore carries a plethora of books on success and we flock to seminars that promise and sell instant success themes to our insecure minds. Our culture adores instant success to such an extent that thoughts of failure or the fact that achieving your goal will take time, shake even the strongest will. The reality is a far cry from our fake belief. There will be obstacles and failures along the way but we must bounce back from the lows. In today’s world, the ‘get rich quick’ mantra shuns the virtues of value and character. We all know that a man without values and character is doomed to fail miserably in life.

‘I have never looked upon ease and happiness as ends in themselves — this critical basis I call the ideal of a pigsty. The ideals that have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth.’
~Albert Einstein

So, from the school of hard knocks, Albert Einstein taught us to work selflessly for others, to never stop growing our minds, to love our imagination, to make our thoughts simple enough for others to understand, to live a life of simplicity, to never quit no matter what it takes to succeed and above all, live a life of the highest values and character. :)

Albert-Einstein-Quote imagination

Are you a graduate of Einstein’s school of hard knocks?

Remember, success is not a straight line, it has curves, valleys and peaks to climb but at the end, it will be worth it! :)

succeed 1

‘Achieving goals by themselves will never make us happy in the long term; it’s who you will become, as you overcome the obstacles necessary to achieve your goals that can give you the deepest and most long lasting sense of fulfillment.‘ – A. Robbins

alb einst man of value

To your success!

Viv :)

Double Winner Awards Author of ‘The book on Success

www.vivoliver.com

Confidence through Confluence!

Hello to all my readers :),

Have you ever wanted to speak up about something important but bitten your tongue and kept quiet instead?

Have you ever experienced being shy and feeling uncomfortable in the midst of other people, for example at the gym?

Have you ever been afraid to ask for that raise you very much deserve and have worked hard for?

I am sure you will agree that everybody could do with a bit more of it in one or more aspects of their lives, whether it’s at school, at work, in a relationship or meeting new people. Have you guessed what it is yet?

Yes, I’m talking about CONFIDENCE:)

I have already written about this subject in my previous posts, so feel free to have a read under other perspectives: Becoming Unstoppable! & Becoming Unstoppable Part 2!

confidence 4

I hold the subject of confidence particularly close to my heart as it is something I have always struggled with and therefore I’m constantly working on it. People that may personally know me will find this statement very awkward as I come across as a very confident person. The reality is that I have learnt to manage my feelings very well using techniques which help me with this very aspect. For example, a couple of weeks ago, I had to have my first ‘professional’ meeting with my dear Bro; he is someone who I know very well, a family member, isn’t he?  Oh boy, believe me, I was so uncomfortable and nervous that I had butterflies in my stomach, my heart was beating like crazy, I could not concentrate on anything he was telling me, I kept asking him to repeat himself and it was so embarrassing! I was so uneasy that I wanted to be anywhere else but there talking to him! Crazy, isn’t? The only positive factor was that I managed my state very well and he didn’t notice my discomfort! You see, even when you have to speak to people who you know and get on with very well, it can still feel painful when broaching a difficult discussion and could sometimes even end a fond relationship like in my aforementioned situation. But, you won’t do yourself justice if you don’t speak up and as a result, you and the other person won’t reach a satisfactory resolution and move on. In my case, I did not reach the outcome I wanted, but testing my confidence with my dear Bro in a new environment has been worth the challenge. He tested my mindset by stretching my comfort zone and as a result, it has really allowed the writing of this post to flourish. :-)  ‘The past is always a teacher of the present…Let go of the guilt and rub off the lesson.’ – James Van Praagh

At this point we might ask: What does it mean to be confident?

To start with, we need to understand what we mean by confidence as it will allow us to verify whether we are confident people. The dictionary defines it as “beliefs in oneself and one’s power and abilities”…

Basically, confidence is the difference between feeling unstoppable or scared out of our comfort zone.

confidence 2

Ok, it is clear there are many benefits to being confident, how exactly can we become more confident?

As in my experience, it takes courage to express yourself, explain your side of the story and ask questions. In any situation which is painful or challenging you will feel fear. Fear in life is an absolute given, you will not escape it. Accepting fear as a natural part of your life and as a means to growth is the first step, it’s the decision you make after the acceptance that is the decisive factor. :)

Are you going to let your fears overcome you or are you going to overcome them?

fear 1

In deciding to overcome your fears you have already demonstrated courage which will give you the strength to carry through the actions needed. But it is only after this that your confidence will have grown. You cannot pluck confidence out of thin air, you need to go through the process of fear, courage, strength and action before you can obtain confidence. It’s similar to putting savings in your bank account. Every achievement becomes your social proof (saving), enabling you to gain more confidence (increasing your bank account) which in turn will help you handle the next challenge.

Many of the factors that affect confidence are actually beyond our control. However, we can get the mental edge we need to reach our full potential. :)

confidence experience 1

How can we learn to be more confident?

We may be familiar with what confident friends may say to us: ‘Well, just be confident, mate!’ However, to a person that doesn’t feel that confident, this piece of advice may not be very helpful at all. You know what I am talking about, don’t you?

I have recently been to an event and one subject that kept coming up was that successful people have a boatload of confidence which has been built through the layering of knowledge, experience, competence, expertise, achievement and success. At this point, I remembered what my financial market trader coach, Jit, kept telling me: ‘Confidence through Confluence!’. What did he mean? By layering all the confluent factors in our favour, they provide us with an edge in the financial market. This is exactly what successful people do in all realms of business including trading. :)

The reality is that confidence is just a step below success. The process is simple: when we are confident, we are deciding analytically and not emotionally, therefore we get our desired results. This concept applies even more in the trading world as my fellow traders very well know. To become confident, at first, traders have to focus on the process and not on the prize or capital involved otherwise their emotions will interfere with their objectivity and produce inconsistent unsatisfactory results as well as guaranteed frustration.

Confidence through a confluence of factors, is essential to grow your belief system to provide you with social proof that the task aimed at is achievable. The first example I can think of is related to my passion for trading the financial market and specifically the selection process in choosing a trade. Check out this post Your trading edge to get more insight into this subject.  I have always used a checklist from the very first day I learnt trading and I quickly discovered the power of it. It helped me to make logical decisions, I simply had to ask myself does this trade meet my requirements or not! What factors were listed in my checklist? Well, honestly, I blindly believed my trader coach as he had more experience than me! He listed the factors I needed to look for that enabled me to make confident decisions when the trade met the listed criteria. Most of my confluent factors are cyclicity, price action, horizontal and Fibonacci levels and all these strengthened my confidence…so, you can see the power of confluence. Combine this with discipline and you can almost guarantee your success.  Be disciplined with your discipline! is one of my dear Bro’s posts based on his personal experience. Why do you not check it out and get inspired? :-)

This principle applies in all aspects of life, for example in business, our confidence grows through our business experience, knowledgeable employees, other experts, intuitive and capable coaches and mentors, talented managers and trusted suppliers to name but a few. You see where I’m going with this…Although the difference between everyday life and trading the financial markets is that in everyday life you can fake confidence as in my aforementioned experience but in trading you can’t because the results will speak for themselves. 

The real question is: What are our confluent factors to increase our confidence?

This is a very personal question. Everyone will have different factors that enable their confidence to grow. However, a commonality is that leveraging or utilising confluent factors suggested by more experienced people, such as coaches and mentors will greatly assist you to become more confident and accelerate your journey to success.  :)

confidence 3

To summarise, acquiring confidence is made up of two steps:

Step 1 : The process.

This consists of overcoming fear through courage to gain the strength to carry through an action to achieve a goal. It’s the achievement which builds your confidence.

Step 2: The layering of your confluent factors.

Once you repeat step 1 often enough, a process of compounding your acquired knowledge, experience, competence, expertise, achievement and success, your confidence becomes an intrinsic aspect of your personality. So Confidence through Confluence! Compounding everything! is a post that I warmly invite you to read in order to expand my dear Bro’s insight on the compounding subject (his 8th wonder of the world). :)  

confidence muscle

Even if we’re reasonably assured most of the time, it is beneficial to do a self analysis check up to review and compare our previous achievements to score our confidence levels. It feels good to be confident, which in turn perpetuates further confidence, impresses people and brings you success.  Is this not what everyone wants? :)

Confidence-Level

So, what level is our confidence?

Remember: when you feel confident, you not only feel happier but also more capable and efficient

The quote below is really a reminder to myself as my confidence level will be again tested today with my dear Bro!  :)

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.‘ – Eleanor Roosevelt

To our growth of Confidence through Confluence!

Viv :) xx

Double Winner Awards Author of ‘The book on Success

www.vivoliver.com

Is your Social Proof reliable?

A warm greeting to all my readers :),

Have you ever experienced feeling uncertain and in need to take cues from others to make decisions?

 

Have you ever felt refraining from or doing something just because you are following what other people are doing?

 

How can we be ourselves, steer our own ships and be individuals despite having a reliable Social Proof?

 

I personally asked myself these questions and the answers were quite revealing. In this article will cover my truth no. 9 ‘Have Reliable Social Proof!’ I listed this in my previous article: 10 Essential Truths to take yourself to the next level.

You see many agree that it’s a well-accepted fact now that we are all ‘social beings’ with a basic need to be connected to others. What is not so well known is that we are such social creatures that we are highly susceptible to being influenced by ‘the herd’ and unless we are a strong natural leader, we tend look to others for behavioural cues. If no-one else is doing anything, the thinking goes that there is a good reason for not getting involved. This effect is particularly significant when we are uncertain what to do, for example when we find ourselves in unfamiliar situations.

social proof 3

It’s common that one means we use to determine what is correct is to find out what other people think is correct…We are social and tribal beings, and what others think about us remarkably important. In our need for a sense of identity we seek to belong and so easily conform with what others are doing. We view a behaviour as more correct in a given situation to the degree that we see others performing it. As with the other “weapons of influence,” social proof is a shortcut that usually works well for us: if we conform to the behaviour we see around us, we are less likely to make a social faux pas. Also auditory cues are powerful stimuli because they influence us at a level of consciousness that is difficult to critique. The reverse effect happens too. When others are doing something that we know is wrong, we are more likely to assume that it is ok to do it too. This explains something of how peaceful crowds can turn into unlawful mobs. It also explains how young people turn to drugs and crime when they see their peers acting this way.

social-proof1

So with this sort of pressure, how can we be ourselves, steer our own ships and be individuals?

Before we dismiss social proof out of hand we need to be fair. Much popular behaviour is valuable and the fact that many people do it may be a good sign that we should follow suit. Regular dental checkups, exercising, taking financial advice and so on, are activities engaged in by millions and with good reason. :)

It’s only when we blindly follow the masses that our individual integrity is threatened – especially when our mind chatter says ‘is this really right?’ before being drowned out by the roar of the crowd. But if we go against the herd at any opportunity then our behaviour is no less mechanical than the social-proof induced actions of a Nazi or fashion victim.

We need to be influenced by those around us for society to function but we also need to understand that more people doing something doesn’t necessarily make it right.

social-proof 2

How do we know if our Social Proof is reliable then?

Saying all the above, we realise that we are social being, of course some more than others as it will depend from our internal or external point of reference. Despise this, we are easily influenced by other people behaviours and at the same time as human being we will need to have the Social Proof that tasks and desired goals have already been accomplished from others to provide us with the certainty that our goal can be achieved. To highlight this point, my dear Bro has written an article on his personal experience to demonstrate what a reliable Social Proof can inspire other to do! As always, I invite you to read his inspirational blog! Here his link: Social Proof…

Take, for example, marathon runners and the time they employ to run one! They provide us with a reliable Social Proof that it is possible for us too!

matathon runners
Since psychological research shows we tend to be influenced by those who are similar to us, we can assume that having a reliable Social Proof will allow us to produce similar results to theirs. Therefore, we will have a reliable Social Proof if the proofs shown are provided by people who are like us, have achieved similar goals and standards to ours and they have a proved record to back up their achievements allowing them to be considered as authority in their field and be worth to look up as role model to follow.

beckham.533.1

Is then your Social Proof reliable?

Only you know the honest answer! :)

Remember: The principle of social proof suggests that we tend to look to others to decide what to do, especially when we are uncertain about the correct behaviour. Seeing others doing something has a powerful influence on us, especially if we perceive those others to be a lot like us. :) ‘Refusal to believe until proof is given is a rational position; denial of all outside of our own limited experience is absurd’ – Annie Besant

david-beckham_1449343c

After reading this article, it will be worth to take some time aside for some revision time!

You might consider to evaluate the reliability of your Social Proof, what impact has in your life and most of all, what results are you achieving because of its influence on you! :)

Does your Social Proof make you going forward and nearer to achieve your goals?

Remember: ‘Winners are not people who never fail, but people who never quit!‘ and ask yourself if what you’re doing today is getting you closer to where you want to be tomorrow.

‘If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.’ – Martin Luther King Jr

Small daily improvements are the key to staggering long-term results. ‘Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.‘ – Robert Collier

Remember: Having a reliable Social Proof is part of the journey to Success. :)

One secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.’ – Benjamin Disraeli

To your reliable Social Proof!

Viv :)

Double Winner Awards Author of ‘The book on Success

www.vivoliver.com

Raise the bar of your game!

Hello readers,

Hope my article finds you well! :-)

 

Have you ever experienced any of the following?

  • Have you put a lot of effort into a project only to bring in measly returns? Did you feel stuck and were you tempted to give up?

 

  • Have you been in a situation where you felt you weren’t earning what you truly deserved?

 

  • Have you been stuck in a job that does not allow you to shine?

 

  • Do you want your name to be valued and respected and to live a life more wholesomely connected?

 

  • Do you long for positive change in your life? Are you longing for an opportunity to show your worth?

 

…… or perhaps it’s time for you to step up and raise the bar. Maybe you are after that salary, that contract, that client or there is something inside that tells you there is more and that you are borne to be great.

If you have experienced any of the above, you are not alone. In fact, I have recently felt connected to some of them too and even today I have received one of the most painful news ever. I was really looking forward to cooperating with one of the most inspirational guys that I know on a a project very close to my heart and today he informed me that he would not be able to as he is too busy with other projects. Did I despair or give up? Not a chance! Although I am downhearted by this news, I am a strong believer that I am the creator of my own path. I’ll do whatever it takes to make things happen, and raise the bar of my game to take my life to the next level!

During this period, the concept that really strengthen and resonated with me was that when we feel overwhelmed, discouraged and downhearted, we need some external support. Above all guidance, motivation and inspiration from someone that has walked the same path before us. For those of you who have read my article 10 Essential Truth to take yourself to the next level’ you will notice that this highlights my second strategy, to have a coach, mentor and a team.

 

How important is a coach/mentor to your success?

An experience I recently had beautifully answered this question. It all started when one of my fitness coaches, Dwayne, invited me to attend his boxing match which took place last weekend. Unknown to me at the time I felt very strange about the whole ordeal. Seeing boxers get beaten up with bloody noses …. oh it was very uncomfortable to watch! I definitely picked up a lot of learning lessons and don’t worry I’ll share the whole experience in my article next week … so stay tuned.

Now back to the subject of coaches, mentors and teams. I’ve listed some main observations I had during the boxing matches below:

1.       Coaches/mentors share their own experience

One thing that you might notice if you’ve watched boxing matches before, is during the breaks the boxer speaks to their coaches/ mentors for feedback and most importantly for tips and techniques to implement in their next round. Being there in person I could really see how heavily they relied on their coaches feedback. Based on the body language in these breaks, I could literally tell which of the two boxers was going to make the first move …

Something more intriguing was the way the boxers adapted to each other as the rounds went by. You could see how each coach/mentor would try to pick out the other teams weaknesses. Moreover how to overcome their sides bad habits. Have you ever tried to overcome one of your bad habits in the past? Challenging wasn’t it? Now imagine trying to overcome a bad habit when you are in the firing line of a boxing match.

You might also be wondering: how much can a few bits of advice from a coach/mentor really have?

Even if the coach is suggesting a few tweaks here and there, they can lead to profound changes in the athletes performance. Just think about golf, if you hit the ball at slightly the wrong angle you are going to end up miles off course! Those of us who run businesses will know how one simple idea could very well lead to massive exponential growth.

2.       Coaches/mentors are committed to our success

Something else I noticed was commitment and trust between both the boxers and their coach/mentors. The athletes would continue to look to them for help throughout the three rounds. Imagine if it was you who was taking a beating and you were putting your faith in someone outside of the ring, who is probably out of shape and long past their prime.

How would you feel about that?What kind of trust would you have to have in that person to listen to their advice?

On the other side, imagine yourself now as the coach. You have 20 years of experiencing in training and your athlete is taking a pounding. You know what he needs to do to take the win but you can’t get in there and fight the fight for him. Imagine how frustrating it would be for you. Think about the type of patience you would need to have. Imagine the kind of dedication and commitment you must have in your boxer to continue to support and motivate him to be resilient, and enthused to keep going until the end of the three matches. ‘The moment you give up, is the moment you let someone else win’. – Anonymous

3.       Coaches/mentors revitalise us to keep going when the going gets tough!

Something else I noticed was that the coaches/mentors were spraying water on the boxers’ faces and body. The reasons? Dwayne’s answer was that it cools the boxers down from their previous round and refreshes them for the next one. Isn’t it true that we get tired and sometimes burn out from our everyday dealings from both business and life? How do we feel when someone gives us a refreshing thought/idea or we spend time with someone that motivates us to keep the momentum going? Well, this is what the spray of water from the coaches/mentors does to the boxers. In terms of personal and business coaches/mentors, while I’ve never seen any spray water on their clients they do use techniques to help rekindle enthusiasm. Remember this kind of action is necessary to motivate and to support you in the moment of setbacks, it’s your raven fan and it will incite you to ‘keep going when the tough gets tougher!’ – W. Churchill.

 

How can a coach/mentor make us raise the bar of our game?

To find out the answer, please ponder over and honestly answer the following questions:

 

Who is the best person to plan and train Muhammed Ali to be on the ring or David Beckham to kick the ball on the football pitch?

                                                             

Have you ever heard of a boxer or a football team without a coach?

Why do the best athletes in the world still have coaches if they are already above their competition?

Let me ask you one more question:

 

Who is the person that always gets recognised by the winners?

 

Isn’t he the coach/mentor? This should make you think about how successful people raise their bar of their game to take themselves to the next level.

Now, here are the two real questions you need to ask yourself:

 

Are you coachable and willing to accept constructive feedback?

Are you willing to do what it takes to move yourself to the next level of success?

If the answers of both questions are positive then it doesn’t matter where you are now in your life journey. If you have any goal or it’s time to step up and raise the bar of your game you will need clarity, a set of actions to follow, the right tools, strategies, techniques and especially a coach, a mentor and a team to accelerate your journey to your next level of success!  J ‘It’s only by doing things others have not that one can advance.’ – George Patton

I take this opportunity to thank from the bottom of my heart, every past and present coach, mentor and everyone who is part of my team as you are very invaluable to my personal and business growth! I will not be where I am today without you as you have all played a big part in my progress :-)

A very special thanks goes to two guys who actually used to be my coaches and I dedicate this related article to them, Tom & Jit. :-) They have really touched my life and allowed me to become the person I am today, ‘they are my life turning point’, I hope I make them smile with this sentence. I have noticed so many of my self-liming beliefs eliminated since working with them. In particular one that was holding me back from writing this very blog! Thank you from the bottom of my heart, words cannot express my gratitude to you both. I will always feel very honoured and privileged to come to know and be coached by both of you and I really miss you. I wish you all the best in life, business and hope that all of your goals become a reality. Jit & Tom, may all the success of this world embrace you to become the best you can ever be! Here are the links to their blogs, I warmly invite you to get in touch with them as both really are very inspirational, talented and special guys with the extra edge of having beautiful smiles :-) and deserve a lot of recognition. Tom’s blog is Springboardyourself.wordpress.com and Jit’s blog is Trader Focus.

What are the reasons to have a coach and a mentor?

 

You’ve got to wake up every morning and ask yourself: ‘How bad do you want it? How much work are you willing to put forth for the things and people you want and need in your life?’ Nothing great comes without effort. But I promise you that if it’s something of great meaning in your heart and something you need in your life…every RISK, every STEP and every DROP of SWEAT will be worth it, I have experienced it so many times in my life. The more energy and effort you put in, the more reward, satisfaction and appreciation you get out! :-)

Are you ready to begin your journey and raise the bar of your game to the next level? Are you ready to make your mark on the world and demonstrate to yourself you were always born to be great? I am ready to help you on your journey to success and would be honoured and privileged to do so. Please do contact me when you have answered this question with a resounding YES!

 

‘Let others lead small lives but not you.

Let others argue over small things but not you.

Let others cry over small hurts but not you.

Let others leave their future in someone else’s hands but not you.’ – Jim Rohn

Remember: you are born unlimited and ready for your greatness. It’s now your time to rise and shine and ignite your brightest spark. It’s time to make your mark and set your wealth and talent free. You were born to shine like the brightest star on the clearest night and now it’s your time to step into the light! :-)

 Well Done, Dwayne!  :-)

If you have any fitness goal to achieve, he is ‘your guy’ and he is waiting for you! :-)

To your success and to raise your game by having your coach and mentor,

Viv :-)

Your Circle of Influence: How does it affect your life?

A very warm greetings to all my readers,

Today’s article is connected to the one I wrote last week, so if you didn’t get the chance to read it, I would suggest you do so now.

I hope you had a chance to respond to last week’s questions as they will help you immensely in your personal growth!

How does our circle of influence affect our life?

We have to acknowledge that some people are born automatically in our lives. Some come through marriages. Geography also plays a role.  Where you work and what you do for a living is a factor.  Even friendships develop through circumstances.  Throughout our lives we end up meeting so many people both personally and professionally. Some people you will only ever know casually while others you will take the time to build relationships with and as a result go on to become trusted allies. It’s those trusted allies you align with that form your ‘Circle of Influence’. Usually those you choose to align with will share common values and similarities or simply compliment your strengths and weaknesses. They will also have no competing interests and represent a synergistic benefit to both parties through an ongoing relationship. Some are negative, others simply neutral and the rest often bless us with enrichment that positively impacts our lives.

So take a moment to think about this question:

Who is already in your circle and who else would you need or like to include?

Before you say you don’t have one … you do! Big or small, everyone has a ‘Circle of Influence’.

Who are the five or ten people you associate with the most?

Check in with your own life. Write their names down and list them under one of the following categories.  Note that depending on the circumstances they might sit in any one of these groups so think about the one that represents them most of the time.

Here the three different categories of people who influence our life:

1. ‘Drainers’ – People who deplete or drain your energy.  They complain, whine, criticise, blame, use sarcasm, condemn, gossip and otherwise focus on the bleaker view of life.  They are pessimistic.  When you spend time with them, you notice the heaviness of their presence, and instantly feel better when you walk away.  These people may be coming to you with their stories and challenges, seeking your support and input. These people aren’t about bringing you joy and happiness, or adding anything but a dark perspective on life.

I personally like to limit my time with people who fall in this category.  However, these people are great mirrors for embracing your shadow or dark side.  While you may consciously choose to limit your time with them, learning to love them unconditionally is often the greater gift with these individuals.

2. ‘Comforters’ – People are likely your friends, peers or possibly family members.  They are a lot like you, and share similar values and interests.  You enjoy being with them, and feel better by being around them.   We all love having people in our lives that bring comfort, acknowledgment, sharing and understanding.

The pitfall or trap to beware of here is the word “comfort”.  This group is likely to keep you anchored to bad habits, disempowering stories and limiting beliefs that may hold you back. Part of how you relate with each other may be through sharing similar problems and challenges.  The relationship may feel less engaging without a challenge to discuss or solve, so problems continue to emerge and cycle. If one of you leaps too far ahead, the relationship may be threatened.  While you may share dreams and goals with each other, there is a tendency to stay “comfortable” with no one moving too far ahead.  Keeping the status quo is the name of the game.

From personal experience I noticed through spending time with this category of people, I became more aware of how to relate and share problems. I realised that I have to focus more on sharing what we desire and appreciate in life.

3. ‘Empowerers’ – These are people who may also be your friends, but there is a distinct difference as their impact challenges you beyond your “comfort zone”.  This group may include mentors, authors, leaders, business associates or those deemed wildly successful.  This group sets the example of what you aspire to emulate.  They may have a life that you admire, respect or are striving for. They are an example of possibility to you.  They inspire, empower, lead and challenge you to grow.  They may believe more in you than you do in yourself, and encourage you to live life to your highest potential.  These people aren’t always the “easiest” to be around because their nature demands the best from you. While challenging, these relationships fulfil the need you have to evolve, which in turn accelerates growth, success and accomplishment Their presence is so potent, that even short time periods are often very influential.

This is the type of people I am surrounded with. Consciously seek out more of these individuals out and spend time with them.  Ask them questionsPay attention to their habits, values, beliefs and state of being.  See yourself as their peer.  Look for ways that you can contribute value to them. Be aware that it will not be easy to be around them as they will stretch you out of your comfort zone in any given time and opportunity. Are you ready for the challenge?

 

Now take a pause for self-reflection and ask yourself the following questions:

How do the people around you play a part in your success?

Do they support and motivate you to succeed? Or is it the opposite?

Are the people around you unsupportive and do not positively contribute to your success at all?

These are all questions that we must ask ourselves from time to time. Our Circle of Influence, the closest people to us, play an important role in our level of success or lack of it. We often assume that if we, as an individual, possess enough drive and motivation that we can achieve anything. Part of this is true, however, having supportive and driven people around you will only increase your chances.

 

Our next step is to write down the 5-10 people you admire, respect and value most.  If your list is short, you may want to commit to expanding your circle of influence and “upgrading” as I did years ago.

It all begins by simply being aware of how people are positively, negatively or neutrally affecting you.  This is enough to allow you to make new conscious choices.

While I’ve continue to expand my associations through the years, I periodically check in with this effective exercise.  I am also quick to notice the Drainers in my life. Through the past years, I am wildly blessed with an abundance of associations and friends that I truly admire and respect.  In recent years, spending time with all of the people I enjoy is the greater challenge.  But wouldn’t that be a problem we would all love to face?

Remember that you should also differentiate your circle of influence into 3 types: friends, associates and role models/mentors. The first, your friends are the ones that are closest to your heart. It should be small and include people I call your flat tire friends, people who will show up in the middle of the night if your tire went down. The second, your associates are people that you know and you spend time with such as co-workers, bosses, friends of friends, etc. The third one is one of the most important as these are the people that inspire and motivate you to success!

I personally took inventory in my own life and wrote down the names of the individuals I was spending the most time with.  Then, I asked the hard question:

“What are the people in my life doing to me?”

Remember, people can only pull you up, down or keep you neutral in your comfort zone. It will not be easy as some people are really close to your heart and you deeply love them. You have to make an objective decision on what category to place them…it will be very difficult but please be honest with yourself as your future could depend on the choices that you are going to make with choosing your circle of influence!

For me back then, I also made a list of 10 people that I would like to spend more time with, and made the conscious decision to do this with individuals I admired, respected and wanted to be most like.  Simultaneously, I limited my time with those who weren’t really adding much to my life and as I mentioned in my previous article, I still give them opportunities to step up the ladder to success if they are willing to do what it takes to discover their potential and talents and to use it to their fullest!

As I have done along with most other successful people, if your desire is to fulfil your greatest potential and live your vision, you have to BE WILLING TO MAKE SOME CHANGES. That will most definitely consist of consciously choosing your circle of influence.

You may experience some discomfort or feel some fear but ultimately you will find you are able to break the cycle of negative influences and boost your own self-confidence!

Be accountable for who you are and what you are doing on a daily basis. If you want to change the course of your life, You have the power and the resources to do so…..and the beginning of that is to change your thoughts …… and choose your circle of influence!

By surrounding myself with people who were more talented than me I was able to achieve bigger and better results. The same is with success in any area of your life. If you continue to surround yourself with people who believe in attaining average results, then that is what you will achieve as well. Look to build friendships with people who think like you do and watch as the results blossom.

Make the decision that TODAY will be the start of your new beginning…for yourself. Stop allowing others to be the reflection of you.

“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference” – this is a famous quote by Reinhold Niebuhr. Hidden within lies an important secret. This is…that we can control our future and our success by consciously choosing and focusing on our circle of influence.

Remember that your circle of influence will either be a means of helping you achieve success or an obstacle holding you back from it. It’s up to you to determine which it will be.

I want to thank my dear bro for allowing me to have some food for thoughts about my circle of influence and to have a better clarity on our relationship! Thank you! :-)

He actually wrote an article on circle of influence a while back, why do you not check it out and see this subject from another perspective? Here the link to my friend’s blog: http://springboardyourself.wordpress.com/2011/09/04/circle-of-influence/

To your consciously wise choice of your circle of influence!

Viv :-)

Ready to challenge the impossible?

A very good morning to all my readers,

I would like to take the time to elaborate on the following questions:

So far what have you ‘stood for and against’ this year?

Have you decided in advance what you will tolerate and what you will fight against?

Are you ready to challenge the impossible and stretch yourself out of your comfort zone?

Personally, I have been reflecting on these questions over the last few of months. During this time I realised that something had been bothering me and further was stopping me from giving my best to others. It was preventing me from producing the results I expected.  Pondering on it, I realised the source of the problem was with a person in my life. I decided to face the issue head on.

What action did you think I had taken? Most of you already know me by now and most probably have guessed correctly. If not this quote will help “I am strong, I welcome new challenges and fair competition. Believe in me. I can do anything.” I proposed a challenge to this person and it took all the courage I had to do this! The person who I am referring to was one of my six coaches, someone who I held very close to me (out of respect I will not reveal their name).

The challenge to say the least was extremely demanding and given the vast differences in experience proposing it at this time made it even more of a mammoth. Just to give you an idea of what I am talking about, it would be like challenging a dancer to dance when you physically cannot move a step… To make matters worse, I did not prepare for it. I knew that I was going to lose even before I started. I also wanted to be as natural as possible and leave my subconscious mind to feel all the emotions of the moment as it would allow me to resonate with the quote below:

What mess us up most in life is the picture in our head of how it’s supposed to be.”

What were the reasons of taking this action?

Now you may wonder why I proposed such a challenge for myself and why I did it. Firstly, I was going to test my mindset. What do I mean by this? As you may know from previous experiences, if you are going to lose a challenge, fight, opportunity, etc. you do not commit to it, and consequently will not approach it with the right mindset.

I strongly believe in this quote: “I may not be the strongest, I may not be the fastest…but I’ll be damned if I’m not trying my HARDEST“.

Therefore I was ready to test my mental metal and confidence in asking something very unusual on my part. As being a coach myself, I learnt that the best way to test skills and abilities in others is to challenge them outside of their comfort zone. In fact the challenge was out of our ‘usual’ coaching environment; I needed to find out where I was in one of my life’s journeys, so that I would know how to move forward. I also wanted to test my coach’s ability to stretch me out of my comfort zone and to really and truly see to what extend he will go into listening to my testing requests. Moreover what will he say and do regarding them…allowing me to practically find out my coach’s reactions

Maybe you think I dare too much. In life sometimes you need to feel the fear and do it to stretch yourself, to feel uncomfortable, to grow and above all you need to ensure that you are always surrounded by A players; positive and inspiring people who you unconditionally assist and receive assistance from to move forward in your journey… Yes, I dare a lot! This time I could end up losing my coach. Honestly it would have been very emotional as we worked together for over a year but it was time to face the issue.

What did I learn from my coach? 

This specific coach taught me that when you make the decision in life to achieve your goals, emotions are not to be involved.  This is certainly not an easy move to make, although this line of thought is certainly advantageous (in case you read this, leave your big EGO at home).

What was the result?

By now I must have enhanced your appetite on the result of my challenge… however I’ll keep this to myself and leave you in suspense for a little longer (to be honest it is too personal and as of yet I have not fully processed and reflected on the experience)…The only thing I will release at this time is one important life lesson I feel you might benefit from. This is that even though I was physically defeated and I still feel the pain of the hits (don’t think that I was beaten up – it was a sport competition) I knew that I needed to see the bigger picture, to work on my mindset and to recognise the corporeal pain will go away in due times. So have vision, you may feel the pain, mental or physical for just minutes, days or weeks but the long term reward will be worth it, many times over. This is another quote I resonate with: “It’s a long and frustrating road, you will cry and fight and abandon and rekindle your will time and time again but in the end it will all be worth it.”

What were the benefits of my actions?

At the beginning I mentioned that I did not prepare for the challenge. Before I go on I need to rectify my statement, I did not prepare physically but I did mentally and emotionally. I used an NLP technique called Future pacing or Future History (Muhammed Ali is famous for it). It can be used to “embed” change in the context of the future. It gives a person the experience of dealing positively with a situation before they get into that situation in reality. This is based on visualization where the mind is assumed not to be able to tell the difference between the scenario which is real and one which has been clearly visualized. The theory behind it is that, having visualized positively, when the subject encounters the situation again in reality the visualized experience will serve as a model for how to behave, even though this experience was imagined.

Guess what? It worked, all my negative feelings and frustrations disappeared during the challenge and I benefited from it even though I did lose it. More importantly I did not feel a loser and I actually enjoyed and learnt a lot from the experience …

It is amazing to see what you can learn when you know the techniques to use, even in a negative situation. You can become a winner, even when you’re actually losing a challenge, match, opportunity, etc – so even though I still feel the pain of the bruises it was a win win situation (yes I know it sounds outrageous!).

I hope you noticed that I have written in bold and highlighted the questions you need to ask yourself to find out if you are ready to challenge the impossible and stretch yourself out of your comfort zone. Please please ensure that you are honest with yourself, that you want to achieve personal growth and become a better you…don’t be scared of losing out in a situation, challenge, match, etc or even losing an important person in your life. Remember that people often serve some sort of purpose in our lives’, whether this is to teach us a lesson, or to help us figure out who we are or who we want to become. When they finish their purpose sometimes the best cure is to let them go. If they ever come back in our lives’, than our relationships will be stronger and offer some benefit towards achieving our goals or life purposes…now that you have read this please write your answers to the questions I have reflected on and take ACTION accordingly!!!!

I hope my experience has helped you think about what you are tolerating and what you are fighting for in your own life…To be honest, it has been quite emotional to relive my daring challenge and experience…just remember if I dare to challenge the impossible for the purpose of obtaining personal growth, then you CAN too!!!! Because there’s one thing I know for sure. If you don’t stand for something, you’ll never be an achiever.

To your personal growth and successes!!!

Viv :-)

Take Action Now!

A very good morning to all my readers,

I firstly wanted to share with you the success that my blog pushed through the 10,000 unique hits mark last week which is incredible considering that it has been live only for three weeks…Thank you for your support and for the nice words and comments received…

I am really delighted so many people are benefiting from the injection of positivity, knowing how much it is helping others stimulate me to keep writing more and more…I am actually enjoying it and I am now looking forward to write the next blog…

This leads me nicely into my latest blog and talking to people last week, a common question that they asked me was:

How can we overcome external changes and challenges to achieve our goals?

I am sure that most of you agree that the impact of change on every aspect of our life is something that we must take into consideration with every decision and choice that we make.

What is the reason? Well, we are living in a world of the most dynamic change that we have ever experienced and seen in all of human history. It seems that things will change more unpredictably and faster in the future than they are changing in the present. Do you agree with the above statement? I certainly do…

We may naturally ask ourselves if this is the case, how can we take control of our lives and overcome external changes and challenges?

My previous blog ended with a quote of B. Tracy which says that people feel that they are controlled by external circumstances. The reality is that our life is determined by our own personal choices and decisions in every area of it. We are where we are and what we are because of ourselves. We are where we are as a result of the choices and decisions that we have made in our past. If we want to be somewhere else in the future, it is up to us to make new and better choices and decisions in the present. Even when we fail to act, it has a consequence that can dramatically impact our lives i.e failing to finish school.

What type of action should we take?

The most important actions that we can take in determining the quality of our life revolve around the virtues and values that we decide to embrace and live by. They are as important to our lives as breathing. What I am stressing is that everything that we do is determined by what we feel to be right and true about life and people – these are our values.

When we are living a life that is aligned to our values, we feel good about ourselves – when we are living a life that is out of line with our values, we feel bad about ourselves.

Just remember that the wonderful thing about being a human being is that we are free to shape and sculpt our own character. Just think of the advantages – we can make new choices and decisions at any time in our lives, especially with regards to our current values.

Maybe the essence of happiness is the achievement of the three common goals of self-esteem, personal pride and self-respect that everyone wants… It is only when we have a sufficient quantity of these that we feel really good about ourselves.

I don’t want to go too deep into it even if the subject really fascinates me… I just hope I have given you some food for thoughts and I hope you find your true mission and purpose in life by identifying your strengths and unique abilities to overcome challenges and external changes… just remember that everything you are, and everything you will ever be is completely up to you. Attaining personal happiness and success is a choice, and a choice that only you can make.

Your job is to find your “heart’s desire.” Your job is to think it through and decide what you believe in and what you stand for and then to select an activity or area of endeavour that is completely congruent with the very best that is within you.

Your job in life is to establish a mission and purpose that enables you to become everything you are capable of becoming, to fulfil your full potential and to make a wonderful contribution to the world around you.

Please take action, even a small step towards achieving your mission and goals. The very worst use of life is to spend our time scrambling up the ladder of success only to find that it is leaning against the wrong building. If we are unclear about what our purpose is in life, we cannot identify which path will provide us with the success and life fulfilment we desire. We must discover which building best suits us before we embark on the climb. Otherwise, it’s just a whole lot of ladder climbing and very little fulfilment.

Therefore, Take Action, Action, Action Now!!!

Have a lovely week!

Viv :-)

The secret to becoming more satisfied in life

Dear readers,

After taking the time to reflect on a very interesting and enlightening week – a double anniversary day with two of the most important people in my life. This is the week in the year where I have the opportunity to learn from two of my own coaches (yes I have coaches too!).

I had the opportunity to spend the most exciting and happy day of my life and instead it turned out to be one of my most depressing days. What is still puzzling me, is it was not because of my two coaches (who were very nicely trying to cheer me up) but because I allowed someone else who had a miserable week to unload their misfortunes on me. It rubbed off my positivity and ruined my big day.

I was not happy and asked myself this question: what is the secret to becoming more satisfied in life?

So, have you ever wondered how you can become more satisfied in life?  How you can enjoy life more than ever?

I believe that clarity accounts for more than 80% of success and happiness.

Out of every other factor, the lack of clarity is responsible for the greatest amount of frustration and underachievement we experience in our lives. That’s why we say that Success is goals and all else is commentary.”

People with clear, written goals, accomplish far more in a shorter period of time than people without them could ever imagine. This is true everywhere and under all circumstances.

You could even say that the three keys to high achievement with regards to your goals are, “Clarity, Clarity, Clarity.” Your success in life will be largely determined by how clear you are about what it is you really, really want.

I want to share with you the 7 steps I use when setting and achieving my goals:

1. Decide exactly what you want in each area of your life. Be specific!

2. Write it down, clearly and in detail.

3. Set a specific deadline. If it is a large goal, break it down into sub-deadlines and write them down in order.

4. Make a list of everything you can think of that you are going to have to do to achieve your goal. As you think of new items, add them to your list.

5. Organise the items on your list into a plan by placing them in an ordered sequence of priority.

6. Take action immediately on the most important thing you can do on your plan. This is very important!

7. Do something every day that moves you toward the attainment of one or more of your important goals. Maintain the momentum!

Only by discovering your innate strengths, by developing them, by exploiting them to their highest degree, you can ever fully realise the greatest amount of satisfaction and enjoyment in everything you do.

With clear goals you can enjoy the present moment, have a positive attitude towards life’s problems, and become more satisfied in life.

A very good quote to conclude today’s blog is :“Sometimes people feel that they are controlled by external circumstances. But the fact is that your life is largely determined by your own personal choices and decisions in every area. You are where you are and what you are because of yourself” – B. Tracy

Never allow people to rub off your positivity and your life accomplishments and even if others are supporting us – always remember that you are the person who is taking action and moving forward – nobody can do it for you!!!

Wish you well!

Viv :-)

A push where we need it the most to get us moving in the right direction!

A very good morning to all my readers,

I have been taking time to reflect on my goals set for this year. I can tell you that after speaking to some of my closest friends and colleagues I have uncovered a deep underlying issue in my mindset. But what, you might ask? Let me elaborate …..

We can cheat ourselves and our dreams ….. just a little each day and nobody will notice it. A Sunday sleep-in, an extra cake and coffee with a friend, watching a TV series, etc – another week has gone past without working on our plans – fitness, business, trading, etc, without developing the skills to rescue us from the everyday life.

Everyone procrastinates; it is part of human nature. However when we cheat and do not do the hard things in life, it becomes corrosive. It rusts the soul. Little by little it erodes the fabric of our dreams and goals until we’re so far away from what we really want that we can’t get excited or passionate about anything. Before we know it, we become lazy, and making weak choices becomes a habit that infiltrates every area of our lives.

This is the essence of a mid-life crisis. Things seem boring, everything seems like a repeat of everything else, and all of a sudden you’re jaded. It doesn’t have to be this way. Small feats of discipline can help us to overcome inertia and bring a sparkle to our eye.

I challenge you. Tomorrow morning, before you get out of bed, lie for a few minutes and ask yourself: “Am I really happy?” While your brain isn’t yet in gear for the day and you’re chasing away the remnants of dreams, take time to reflect. And if you are not happy, ask yourself for some solutions:

A)    “What would it take to make you happy?

B)    Is that something within your control?

C)   What would be the first step towards making happiness come true?”.

You may think you have unlimited time, let me say this – if you are between 30 and 50 years old you have around 2500 weekends left. The clock is ticking. If you are not going to pursue the things that give you a buzz and put a spring in your step, nobody else will, I guarantee it.

I coach a lot of people and sometimes I see them taking the easy option. They do the fun stuff, and other things that are more demanding pile up on their desks.

Success is more about discipline than talent. It’s built on the back of the habits you form and the commitments you make.

When you truly desire something, your habits and actions align themselves with your priorities. You’ll find yourself doing things that are congruent with where you want to be in life and you’ll be granted some bonuses along the way when some things you desire fall miraculously into your lap.

Once you have written your plan – business, trading, fitness, etc – you are allowed to smile a little smugly. Realise you are in the top five per cent of people and traders. Know that this will make a difference to your entire life and career. When you do a small thing well, give yourself permission to admit you have done well.

Savour even small successes. Know that anyone who decides to stop making excuses can be just as successful as you are. You can achieve, without the guilt others may think should accompany your success. Get over it. Get on with following your plan – you owe it to yourself, to the people you love and the ones that believe in you!

The best possible thing you can do right now to cream success into your year is to dump the negative self-talk and get to work on writing your plan if you have not done so yet.

Then, how are doing against your goals set for 2012? Are you on track and committed?

As my coach highlighted to me when sharing one of my plans with him, we need to have in place, rewards and punishments for good and bad behaviours and most importantly we need to review our plan against our results on a regular basis.

Have you set time aside for reviewing your progress and results to ensure that you are following your plan?

Just remember that only if you are fully committed to following your plan diligently, will you reap the rewards of success…remember that the most important successes are related to discipline…

Strive to be different, and don’t give up. Statistically most of the people have already given up on their new year’s resolutions and goals. As you will know I am sure that you want to be in the 20% of successful people. So be BOLD and be DISCIPLINED to stick with your plan even if it is not easy, it will be worth it, believe me!!!

Have a great week!

Viv :-)

 

What are your goals for 2012?

Dear readers,

I thought I’d start this year’s blog with a provoking question that will hopefully make you take some decisive actions!!!

I will start with a powerful quote from Steve Jobs:

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.  Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the reasons of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary”.

In line with the quote above, I will be personally attending a workshop next week to ensure that I am committed to a journey of making a difference, self-reflection and taking action to achieve my goals for 2012. A journey that could well provide the time I really need to give me clarity of thinking for my personal mission in life. The time to reflect on how I can become my own hero in my own time.

What about you?

Have you thought of what are you going to accomplish in 2012?

How can you ensure that you will achieve your goals?

In life, we have all faced tough times, haven’t we? Amongst these many challenge there have been some incredible successes too.

When you think about your own life, how do you feel the last year has played out for you?

Listening to those around me and from my own experiences, I do see the problems and hardships that life brings us; I also see tremendous possibilities and greatness. Opportunities to take risks, gain new learning’s and wisdom, and to do incredible and extraordinary things.

Some people just sit around and expect change to happen to them. Be honest with yourself, you know it won’t happen. If you do not take action, you will not achieve your mission in life. I am not trying to be negative, I am speaking from the bottom of my heart. I have sometimes had to fight against the wind to achieve some of my goals and funnily enough when you think you have just faced the toughest time of your life, here you go again facing another challenge, this time even greater than the last. I am sure I am not the only one to face these kinds of situations!!! In self-reflection you realise the improvement that you have obtained by facing challenges head on. You become a better and stronger person and you might even be surprised by the number of skills you end up acquiring …. that is until you face you’re next challenge!!! I am sure that you know what I am talking about!!!

As someone well acquainted with life’s ups and downs, I see a great number of people struggling in our current economic environment.  I want to encourage you to know that no experience in your life is too difficult to overcome and no defeat is permanent.

I serve as an example, both good and bad, of how to deal with difficulties in our lives. I have recently been fighting against the wind (again) which believe me is quite something – I am more exhausted than ever before …. But I am still not about to give up (near though) as I know that if I am determined and focused and have my Big why and purpose clear in mind, I will eventually reap some blessing (maybe not what I originally wanted but something such as an important value that is still worth fighting for). So if I can, you can too…

I believe it is important to enjoy those times when life smiles upon us.  I also believe that it is unrealistic to expect good times to last forever.  For most of us, life offers us an abundance of opportunities, both for tears and for laughter.  The good times you put in your pocket to savour.  The hard times go to your heart and into your soul.

My friends, you have got to make the decision to be relentless; to never give up.  You have got to ask yourself the right questions, to find that reason … that purpose that will give you the stamina – if life has caught you on the blind side – to get back up again!

You have got to be BOLD – you have got to believe in yourself.  There is an old African proverb that says “If there is no enemy within, the enemy without can do us no harm”.

Now, after giving some food for thought, what are your goals for 2012?

What will make 2012 different from last year?

You are the only person that can respond to these questions and be honest with yourself as you are the only one who can make a difference in your own life.

Zig Zaglar quoted: “You are the only person on earth that can use your ability” – please use it to the fullest to achieve your goals and enjoy your life!!!

I hope all of us can take action and set at least one goal for 2012 to be achieved – just remember that you need determination, discipline and above all a good plan!!!

I will love to hear about your goals and achievements!!!

I hope you have benefited from my articles in my blog as I really enjoyed sharing my thoughts and experiences with you!!!

Sorry if this article is longer than the previous one, but it is a subject very close to my heart!!!

Have a nice week!!

To your success!!!

Viv :-)

The Key to Success!!!

Dear readers,

The most important thing in life is to have clarity to know what you want to do, have, and be. Lack of this clarity will result in confusion and under achievement. Every great life achievement commences with having a vision… a specific goal that inspires and motivates you to reach higher and beyond what you have ever achieved before.

What is your vision that enables you to achieve your goal?

Imagine for a second that you have no limitation on what you can do, have or be…

Imagine that you have all the time, money, resources, experience, skills, knowledge, all the friends and contacts needed…

If you could have anything in life, what will it be?

Project forward three years and visualise that your life is now perfect in every way.

What does it look like? How do you feel?

Who is there with you? What are you doing?

Describe your ideal future as if was perfect in every respect…

Take a breath…Hopefully I gave you something to think about…

The key to success is quite simple as all great truths seem to be.

What is it then? It is to set one challenging and big goal and to pay any price, overcome any obstacle and persist through any difficulty until you finally achieve it.

Once you achieve an important goal, you create a pattern, a model for success in your subconscious mind and it will repeat that success when attempting to achieve other goals.

Yes, by overcoming adversity and obstacles and achieving one great goal in any area of your life, you will program yourself for success in other areas as well. Every success, over and above your first one, builds belief and confidence that you will be successful next time.

In a nutshell, we learn to succeed by succeeding. The more we achieve, the more we can achieve. It’s the early process of motivating yourself to set and achieve that FIRST goal that moves you one step closer to becoming an achiever.

If we are determined and motivated we can accomplish almost any goal that we set for ourselves if we persist long enough and work hard enough. We will learn to persist by persevering in the face of great adversity when everyone and every fibre of our being screams at us to quit. Just remember that the only person who can stop to achieve your goals is YOU…nobody else.

I strongly believe in the saying that “what does not kill makes you stronger”. My personal experience, especially recently, has proved it to be the truth. I thought I was tough enough and I had a strong enough personality to go through any obstacles presented in front of me to achieve my goals, but believe me what I am today is a different person to what I was only a year ago. I had to allow people to affect and to improve my life and sometimes it is the person that comes unexpectedly and as a  pleasant surprise that makes the biggest impact in your life (a special person who I am infinitely grateful to has been my TomTom in the past year in every aspect of my life and I cannot thank him enough for it). As a result I became a person of great strength by persevering in the crucible of intense difficulty, and each time you force yourself to persevere, rather than giving up, our character “crystallizes” at a new and higher level until we become unstoppable and we finally succeed. Believe me, if I made it, you can do it too!!! It is not going to be an easy journey but it is worth it…

I want you to promise me only one thing after reading this article: think about your goal and visualise it to make it real to you and take the first step even if it is a small one to get closer to achieve it. You will feel an inner satisfaction of accomplishment that will motivate you to accomplish your goals…

Have a lovely day and please take action NOW!

Viv 🙂