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Category Archives: Fresh Start

Befriending the Enemy

One time, I took action regardless of the fear I felt in my heart.

The greatest power we can ever own is living fear-free. This is a healthful way to live. As with any new habit, it can take a few weeks before it becomes part of what you do, say, think.

I discovered that if I have patience with myself and take things a tiny step at a time, I can make positive things happen.

In some way as well, every once in a while, with my heart in my mouth, I close my eyes and take that large singular step. I then open it and realize that I was able to achieve something.

Break free from fear by taking positive action towards your goals RIGHT NOW.

Break free from fear by taking positive action towards your goals RIGHT NOW.

Whether at work or at home, take things one day at a time, one single step at a time, or even one moment at a time.

Make that most important client call you’ve been postponing for the last moment.

Tackle that most irritating yet valuable task you’ve been relegating till whenever.

Take action upon an issue that has been sitting in your To-Do list for the longest time.

Every single day, take at least one action step related to your business goals as well as your personal dreams. And once you have taken that first step, take action daily despite the fear in your heart and the critical voice in your mind.

As you do so, your business and your life take on definite changes.  Fear, which was once the much-dreaded enemy lurking in the shadows, will soon be the much-needed ally in bolstering you towards success.

What has been your greatest fear and how were you able to deal with it?

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Your Happiness Doesn’t Have a Sequel

Don’t postpone happiness.

Heart Stoppers for Champions (courtesy of RayaGr)

Heart Stoppers for Champions (courtesy of RayaGr)

Don’t even reschedule it, hoping the moment will come again and surprise you like a windswept lover.

Because somehow these tiny snatches of sunshine and joy may no longer have a sequel.

 

 

Suffocating Thoughts

Why is it so easy to think negatively? Well, how simple can it get, really.  Our active mind finds it simple to imagine the negative outcomes of your new business plan, your next uttered phrase or that meeting with a client you have coming up the next minute or the next day.

Queer as it may seem, it’s easier to visualize all the things that can go wrong.  Can’t help it, you say.

Here’s what is obvious: when you visualize clearly, and keep thinking about it over and over again, you don’t actually lessen the chances that you’re going to mess things up.

Snow creeps in and all great ideas get frozen, useless. (photo courtesy of Shawn Shepheard)

 

In fact, you may be fueling your chances and increase the odds against your favor.

When you choose to visualize the positive, the wonderful, the profitable, the awesome…voila! you’re more likely to keep your gems and in fact create the opportunity for great things to happen.

It is such a bad habit to cultivate something that leads us to failure.  It has never brought much success, if it brings any at all.

Invest in What’s Real

Invest in what’s real, who you really are and how you actually live your life.

I remember wandering aimlessly round the mall one Monday, and I was tempted more than once to fit myself into a size 0 pair of jeans that I spotted in a shop window.  The sales staff said, “Get it now before stocks run out.”

I thought about it for a second, and then I remembered that I couldn’t possibly squeeze myself into that tiny pair and decided I’d rather spend the money on my daughter’s trinkets and toys, a book I’ve long been wanting to read or maybe just save it toward the next trip to the malls.

Photo by Mark Mante

Someone once said we’re happiest when “our decisions most closely match our natures and our values.”

Well, I can relate that to our shopping addiction, err…decisions. Instead of spending money on the things you may have no use for in the future, ask yourself before purchasing anything, “How much do you need it? Will I die longing for it?”

This is a simple way of investing in your day-to-day life, and not feeding your fantasy life uselessly.

Top 3 Business and Life Lessons of 2012

Make peace with your past.

Have you made a couple of mistakes both professionally and personally that continue to hound you or that nearly cost you your life’s savings, even your life?

In life, you learn how to deal with mistakes

Three ways to conquer and silence the beast:

  1. Forgive yourself for committing a faux pas, then move on.  Start again!
  2. What’s the lesson that merits your undivided attention? Don’t lose it.
  3. Recreate something useful and creative from what tripped you in the past.

Eat, pray, love.

Your own fears can be a stumbling block to success and can cause even the most diligent to retrace their steps back to the starting line instead of push towards the finish line.

You eat while I pray which is what they love

What’s wrong with enjoying the lasting benefits of a plateful of fruit with a slab of chocolate on the side? Why be scared of asking God for what you’ve been dreaming of for two or more decades? What’s the fear that’s preventing you from reciprocating the humble affections of a loved one?

Pay it forward.

I started out as a virtual worker knowing only the basics.  With the help of family, friends and colleagues, I was able to understand the intricacies of balancing home life, motherhood and a virtual career.  I was able to discover the joys of helping a business grow and help other people in the process.

A great way to settle old debts

There are many ways to pay your dues forward, but one main thing stands out the most: always reach out.  It is not enough to just listen to what others say or don’t say.  Most times, it is the unspoken word that strikes a deep chord and moves the person to action.  So reach out and hold on to the person until he has steadied himself and can ably help someone else.  Let the cycle continue.

Cheery Cheesecake

I’ve always wanted to do something express, like blitz through Christmas, zip through the New Year then float all year ’round.

There have always been questions as I may be able to do one or all of the above:

  1. How to start
  2. Where to start
  3. Whose company to suffer

Obviously, there will always be that much more daunting task of gaining a friend’s confidence in doing something that has nothing to do with anything normal —you can’t sail through Christmas without first savoring it for  all its accouterments, you can’t face January without having jetted off into sense through the Holidays and can’t afford to float around like a bum the next whole year with mouths to feed, a couple of luxuries to sustain and a paradox of a life to configure.

I look at Nigella and see how easy and cheery it is to create Cherry Cheesecake from scratch.  But then well, I do not pretend to be Nigella at all, although I have started to chill the graham crust in the fridge as I type this up (having long gobbled up the oatmeal cookies that were supposed to pass off as digestive biscuits)

There is also one question I’ve long been wanting to ask: when to start.

You see, when there is the intention to do something better —or extraordinary even— there will always be the length of time (to complete it sensibly) factored in.  You always wanted to know when you want things to happen, if ever they do happen at all.

Undoubtedly, there lies the challenge of creating a cheery cheesecake of a dream, which everyone wants to partake of but which only a few brave souls can muster up the courage to see through completion.  We know beauty when we see it, but creating something beautiful out of the ordinary is something we presume as herculean and dismiss as trivial.

Let me start making the sour cream filling, but first let me ask you: what is it that is holding you back?

And when do you plan to take the cheesecake out of the fridge of your dreams?

Tears in Heaven (dedicated to the Connecticut Massacre Victims and Families)

I keep stopping while drafting this post.  Overflowing tears are blinding.

Tragedy strikes and you are engulfed in sorrow, disbelief.  Losing a child is like losing the ability to breathe, losing life itself.

Eric Clapton collaborated with Will Jennings to write this ballad in honor of Clapton’s four-year-old son Conor, who fell from a window of the 53rd-floor New York apartment of his mother’s friend in 1991.  What went on in Clapton’s mind the minute he saw Conor sprawled on the pavement? This song illustrates his grief and America comforted him hugely: the song is one of Clapton’s most successful and stayed in Billboard charts for weeks on end.

My heart goes out to the families and friends who are doing their best to cope with death.  Prayers keep one steady, retain peaceful and happy thoughts in one’s mind and heart —because how can you go on with your day when the person you love most goes away for good?

How can you put a handle on this pain that has intruded your sanity when lives have been snuffed out due to some heartless action?

There has to be a peaceful way out of this violence.  We get so hung up on laying the blame on just about anything in order to build up a story —because we are all clueless.

My friend says it quite aptly: we have long left love in the backyard of our dreams, sauntering out the door to meet with our egos.