Monthly Archives: September 2010

Making a Creative Difference in Overcoming Procrastination

It’s a difficult new habit to stop procrastination completely, but you can make great progress in overcoming procrastination.  That’s what this series of blog posts is all about.

My hope is that you’re getting great tips and advice in my previous posts.

I’ve had big battles with taking action on things that needed to be done.  It’s an easy habit to get into.

I’ve attempted to become more of an active creator in life (rather than a passive reactor to life), Doing things like setting long-term goals, reviewing these goals, breaking them down into short-term doable steps has helped me make greater progress

You too can make a creative difference in the following areas:

Your Mental Health

As I mentioned a bit earlier, I’ve become more of an active creator in my life.  This is in contrast to the past where I’ve been more of a passive reactor.

When we don’t set goals, make plans for achieving them, or take action upon them, we’re being more of a passive reactor in life.  We then become reactors to our circumstances- and we feel powerless to change.

If you haven’t done so, I’d encourage you to become an active creator in life by:

  • setting goals (with the benefits or rewards for achieving them)
  • reviewing them
  • breaking them down to short-term steps
  • taking action on them

Becoming more of an “active creator” in life has helped me experience greater motivation, encouragement and hope for the future.

Your Personal or Spiritual Development

A friend of mine listens to CDs from Jim Rohn.  On his CD series, Rohn encouraged listeners to think about the type of person they would need to become to reach their goals.

I’ve found that when I don’t take time for my own personal or spiritual development, it has a detrimental effect on my personal growth in many areas.

Listening to positive, uplifting material will help you:

  • become inspired to reach your goals
  • feel greater motivation (which will stop procrastination in its tracks), and
  • overcome challenging circumstances in life

Your Physical Health

Hopefully, you are reading this with the blessing of good health.

This morning, I felt a bit sluggish.  I do my work out on specific days of the week- Tuesday is one of the days I’ve made plans to use my home exercise equipment.

I went ahead with my workout this morning.  I’m glad that I did.

Consider the tremendous physical, mental and emotional benefits to keeping in shape.

I’d encourage you to look after and value your physical health- it’s vital to your life and well-being.

Your Career Development

This is another important area of life where you can be an active creator.

For example, there may be new skills that you’d like to discover or acquire.  You may find that learning and gaining these new skills would make your work more enjoyable.

There are many great learning opportunities we can all take advantage of.

Become the active creator in your current career- or for the career you hope to work in (if you’re a student).  You’ll find more meaning, purpose and motivation for your work- as you determine what you want to learn – and then take action and acquire the new skill-set.

Your Sphere of Influence

Become an “active creator” in your sphere of influence.  I’d suggest that you may want to determine the difference you want to make in the world around you.  Maybe you’d like to bring more awareness, purpose, value, joy, discovery and learning for those you come into contact with.  This is part of the purpose of my blog, and I’d encourage you discover the difference you’d like to make.  This defining “difference” is part of your purpose, and with a solid, inspiring purpose- you’ll make great strides in overcoming procrastination.

In my next post, I’ll share with you a few ideas about how I’ve questioned my dominating thoughts- as I’ve overcome procrastination in many areas of my life.

An Encouragement to Question your Beliefs and Overcome Procrastination

strength1

“I can put this activity off until tomorrow.”

This has part of my thoughts sometimes.  If you’re like me, it’s easy to take the path of least resistance in life.

But where does that lead us?  It leads us into a life of unfulfilled dreams and hopes.  Today I’d like to help you questioning any faulty beliefs that come to mind (or beliefs that others may try to sell you on).  I’d also like to encourage you as I examine the root causes of procrastination- ones that I’ve been battling.  After you read this post, I hope that you’ll have new energy and purpose for going after your goals and dreams in life.  Your life and your contribution to the world around you are too valuable to be left to the land of “someday”.

3 Main Root Causes of Procrastination

I tend to look back upon my life carefully as I create these posts.

To me, life is a great mixture.  There are those who will inspire you with hope, confidence, and encouragement.  There are also those other people in life who will try to bring you down, kill your dreams, and steal your joy – but only if you let them.

Here are the three main causes of procrastination that I’ve encountered.

Avoiding Embarrassment

I’m sure we’ve all had the experience of being belittled for something.  It’s a humiliating experience.  I think it keeps us from taking chances in life.  When a difficult task comes up, you may tend to think  “I don’t want to go through that type of experience again.” Other types of thoughts I think we encounter with procrastination are “I think I’ll avoid the whole thing altogether” and “I’ll take care of it another day”.

With my online business, I have a dream of helping many people live fuller, richer lives.  I have challenges starting things up and getting things going.  It’s difficult for me to ask for help because of my fear of embarrassment.  I’ll hesitate from time to time as I call some of my contacts and resource advisers.  I don’t want to experience embarrassment for asking a “dumb question” or a type of question that might be obvious to them.

But then I think of the alternative.  I get to learn, grow, and develop as a business and website owner.  I get to help more people.  The experience of encouragement, hope, help, motivation, and direction helps move me closer to my goals.

Here’s a question that we can ask ourselves if we procrastinate because of potential embarrassment:

“What will this procrastination cost me- in terms of lost opportunities?  How will I lose out in the long run as I delay the plans I’ve made to achieve my goals?”

You and I will experience so much more out of life- as we step outside of our comfort zones.  Your goals and dreams are way too important to sideline because of potential embarrassment.

Fear of Loss/Failure

Is the fear of failure hampering your success in life?  It is if you let procrastination rule in your heart and mind.  If you do so, it will have a detrimental effect upon your actions.

Whenever my fear of failure arises from time to time, I encourage myself with the following statement:

“If I move through my fear of failure and tendency to procrastinate, I will experience greater self-respect, motivation, and strength in life.”

Remember that great leaders such as Winston Churchill and Abraham Lincoln did not allow prior failures to prevent them from trying again in life. I consider these two inspirational men as great examples of perseverance- and the resilience to never quit.

Fear of Inadequacy

It’s tough to make progress sometimes, if you let the fear of inadequacy get in the way.  If you feel that you’re not up to a task, it’s easy to say “I’ll put this off until tomorrow” and “I’m not ‘up’ to this challenge.”

You and I will never feel completely adequate to achieve our goals.  That’s part of life- and part of what makes goals and plans for the future most enticing.

I’m determined to make each day count.  For me, this means taking action, making mistakes, learning new things, and asking for advice and help when I need it.  If you and I always wait for the perfect moment, we’ll never take action.

Be encouraged that you’ll build strength, courage, and new learning as you take action in life.

In my next post, I’ll share some thoughts of how being a more active creator in life has helped me become more motivated — and how it has placed me on the path to overcome procrastination.

strength1 An Encouragement to Question your Beliefs and Overcome Procrastination

Awareness and Action helps us Overcome Procrastination

Welcome to my new series of blog posts.

I hope this series of blog posts will help you examine and overcome procrastination (or your tendencies to procrastinate from time to time).  This is my aim with my next series of tips.

The topic of procrastination really “hits home” with me- as I’ve tended to do so in my own life.  So these upcoming posts are from personal experience- and are helping me move forward and make better progress towards my goals.

The Definition of Procrastination

If you’re like me, it’s difficult to become aware of a tendency, unless I have defined it.  In this case, I think it’s helpful to define procrastination.

Webster’s dictionary defines procrastination with its Latin roots.  The word “pro” in Latin means “forward” and “cras” in Latin means “tomorrow”.  The dictionary then defines procrastination as “to put off doing (something) until later”.

As I looked at the definition, I realized that I do procrastinate.  I came to realize that I’m putting things “forward” until “tomorrow”.  As we define procrastination and become aware of our tendencies to do so, we can develop new strategies and overcome this bad habit.

I encourage you to journal about the things you’re procrastinating about- as a first step towards greater awareness.

A Question to Reflect Upon

The big question that’s come to mind for me is one that may be helpful to you:

“Am I procrastinating and putting things off until tomorrow or for some other indefinite day in the future?”

This has been a hard question for me to face.

It’s been amazing to me as I reflect upon the things I put off doing.  Recently, I’ve taken a look at the things that I put off.  I’d like to give you a couple of examples in the next section.

Create an Action Plan and Benefits for Completing the Project you’ve “put off”

In learning about running a SOHO office- the acronym for “small office, home office”, I’ve encountered challenges I didn’t know existed.

First, I’ve learned that I’m not the most organized person on the planet with the paperwork and projects I’ve needed to organize.

Lately, I’ve recognized this- and have become much better organized.  It’s almost there.  I feel so much better about the way I’m organizing and conducting my training and online business.

When you become aware of the activity you’re putting off- and do something about it, the feeling of well-being is so valuable.  It allows you to experience:

  • Greater control & clarity
  • Less confusion
  • A feeling of greater accomplishment

Here’s a second example:

I’ve started working on this upcoming series of blog posts.  There was a key step in the research that I’m doing.  This research really helps me in the content that I’m creating for you (and my hope is that this will make my content better and more useful and valuable to each reader of my posts)…

For this upcoming series of blog posts, I needed to do some preparatory work and research.  I was thinking of putting it off this morning until my next post- which is this upcoming Friday.

I did the research this morning.  I feel better for doing so and not putting it off until another time.

As you create an action plan and get started, you’ll have the motivation or impetus to get started and keep going.

Looking back at the bulleted list of 3 benefits a few paragraphs ago, I’m now experiencing greater control – my work is now more organized and less haphazard.  I feel less scattered and confused about where to find my printouts, goals and projects. I have greater clarity about my progress with each project and goal.  I’m able to access the resources I need more easily.  There’s been less searching and more action-taking.  The sense of accomplishment is an awesome feeling, as I’ve finally completed the activity I previously put off.

In my next post, I’ll share about the role of our belief in our tendencies to procrastinate, and the importance of questioning our faulty beliefs.

How the Value of Honor encourages Truth, Respect, and Greater Success

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Today’s post concludes my series on the topic of values, which I categorized as “The Value-Based Life”.

I hope this latest series of blog posts has been valuable to you.

It’s been a challenge to define my values, but it’s been helpful as I’ve formulated my goals in life.

In order to define the term “values”, I wanted to find a really good definition for this term.

Wiktionary.org defines values as “a collection of guiding, usually positive principles; what one deems to be correct and desirable in life, especially regarding personal conduct.”

To me, honor is one of the important values and is well worth defining and using as a guiding principle for the following activities:

  • goal-setting
  • our daily actions in our personal life
  • our business dealings in today’s marketplace

The above list would most likely contain many more activities.  Anything that involves an action in our life on a daily basis could be included.

To me, there are also a few benefits to living our lives by the value of honor.

The Value of Honor encourages truth

Honor is an important value- as it distinguishes between right and wrong.

For instance, without the value of honor, there is no respect or esteem for self or for society.  The laws of society are based on honor- respect for each person’s human rights.

There is another angle to how honor encourages truth.

The value of honor also helps us stay “true to ourselves”.  Do you feel that you are being true to yourself with:

  • the career you’re pursuing?
  • your daily life- and the actions you’re taking?
  • the habits that you take on a daily basis?
  • the goals that you’ve set for yourself, so that your goals are aligned with your true values?

I didn’t want to create too many lists and things to think about for this post, but these are types of “probing” questions- and are ones that are worth reflecting upon from time to time.

Honor places greater respect for self and for others

Greater respect for ourselves and for others is exceedingly valuable in life.

Without the proper respect for ourselves, as you know we won’t set goals, make progress in life, develop personally or professionally.

I had a period of time in my life where I did not live by the value of honor for myself and my own progress.  My own personal and professional progress stalled.

Living by the value of honor also helps us demonstrate greater respect for others.  It helps us bring greater peace in our homes, in our workplaces, and in all our interactions with others.

The Value of Honor helps us live successfully

I read an interesting quote some time back.  I’m not sure who made the quote, but it’s a great quote:

“A job well done brings honor to the task and satisfaction to the soul.”

For a business, honor is one of the great ethical values that encourages customer loyalty.  Businesses know that as they provide quality products, market them effectively, and deliver superior customer service, they’ll be profitable and successful.  This includes honoring their agreements, and not taking shortcuts in their work.

For each of us as individuals, we can do the same- by doing our work to the best of our abilities, staying true to our goals and our purpose, and by not compromising our efforts with the easy shortcuts I mentioned earlier.

I hope this post has helped you think about how you can incorporate the value of honor into your own life.  It will help you live life more fully as you stay true to your purpose, goals, and dreams for you life.

In my next series of posts, I’ll share ideas on procrastination and motivation – geared towards your greater success.

STC Honor How the Value of Honor encourages Truth, Respect, and Greater Success


How the Value of Gratitude inspires us towards Greater Joy and Success

Attitude_of_Gratitude

The value of gratitude is one of the best personal values to develop and follow in life.

I’ve found it to be a value that needs to be developed because it doesn’t happen naturally.

There are so many benefits that result in our lives from developing and practicing gratitude.  As each new day begins, I encourage you to reflect on those things you’re most grateful for.

Greater Inspiration

If you’re like me, having extra inspiration is always helpful.  Having a journal has been quite valuable to me.  I now have a historical record of my struggles, my progress, and the things that I am grateful for.  It’s helped me become more inspired, and more motivated to work on my goals when my energy level isn’t high.

New Learning

The value of gratitude helps us learn about what’s most important to us.  This is extremely helpful.  I think it expands and widens our view of life, and the good things or blessings we’ve received.

Our lives become narrow and limited without the value of gratitude.

Since I wrote my eBook chapter on the topic of gratitude, I’ve recognized how having gratitude helps me personally and professionally.   I’ve been able to see and recognize good things that have resulted from difficult times in my life.

For example, I can be grateful for some of my previous challenges and difficulties, because I’ve experienced new learning, development and growth.  If I hadn’t experienced any difficulties, I wouldn’t have experienced these benefits- although the difficulties were painful at the time.

Greater Balance

The value of gratitude helps us also achieve more balance in life.  I think this value allows us to see things in proper balance.

For example, in the past I’ve found it easy to get caught up in negativity.  There have been many negative sources- such as the news, other people, and even myself.

Defining and developing the value of gratitude has helped me to recognize good things in my life.  As you look back you may have a list like this…

  • health
  • a creative and active mind
  • goals that motivate and inspire you
  • freedom to pursue your career and your goals

Having a gratitude list is valuable.

This type of list helps you by recall good things or blessings that you have in your life.  It refocuses your mind on the daily blessings you experience but don’t always recognize.

I encourage you to practice the value of gratitude in life.  You’ll experience greater joy, inspiration and success in your life.

My next post will be about the value of honor, which is a great value to define and develop for our lives.

Attitude of Gratitude How the Value of Gratitude inspires us towards Greater Joy and Success