Human Progress is Neither Automatic nor Inevitable

Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable. Moving forward is often the most difficult thing we will accomplish in our lives. The path from where we are to where we want to go can seem daunting. The fear of success and the intimidation of failure can cause us to never take a step outside our comfort zone.

What dream are you dreaming that causes you to lay awake at night yearning? Why are you not moving toward that dream in the light of day?

Today is THE only day you need to get started. Small steps or giant leaps – either will get you that much closer to where your heart desires you to go.

Just take a leap of faith and begin!

 

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Fighting the Fear Factor

Do the thing you fear most and the death of fear is certain. ~ Mark Twain

My dog is extra large; however he has a fear of jumping in the bed. It is an easy leap for smaller dogs, but for the big guy jumping in the bed is a scary, gut-wrenching thought. He cries to get in, and then runs away if he thinks you’re going to ‘help’ him in. Then the moment his feet hit the bed he dances around like Rocky at the top of the Philadelphia stairs, his pride in making it onto the bed is palpable. He wants to reach his goal of being in the bed, but his fear of doing it keeps him from making the leap with out human intervention.

How many times in life do you really want something? You really really want to run a race, or write a book, or lose a few pounds but you allow your fear to get in the way? Like my dog you see all the things that could go wrong. We talk and cry about our goals. We tell people what we want. Yet, we find every excuse to not start today. Fear overtakes us and we see all the obstacles and our fear grows until we are immobilized by our fears. When in reality, a full concentration on the elation you will feel when you arrive is all that is necessary.

Today stop crying at the foot of the bed of your goals! Today take the leap!

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Just Do It

I am a part of the ‘Just Do It’ generation. In 1988, when Nike came out with the famous slogan, I was a young adult struggling to transition from the world of academia to the ‘real world’.  Just do it seemed a fitting mantra for those times.

Just Do It

Except do we ever just do something?

What exactly do we mean when we say ‘Just Do It”?

We must remember that thoughts precede actions, which precede change. I know of not one person who ever set out to reach a goal and just did it. First they thought of the goal. Then they planned how to reach the goal. Lastly they put themselves where the rubber meets the road and they just did it.

Are you trying to reach a goal by just doing it? Have you laid the proper foundation for success?

Here are some ideas for being successful in reaching your goal:

 

  1. Access your starting point.  For example if you wish to run a marathon, perhaps you need to talk with your doctor about your bum knee first. If you are anxious for a particular job position, access your qualifications first. Now you know your starting point.
  2. Identify the goal. This seems so simple but know what you wish to achieve. Name the race, or name the job. Create a photo of what reaching your goal looks like, either in your head or a real photo (more on that in a later post).
  3. Determine your course of action. Think of this as planning a road trip. Plan each step along the way.
  4. Now is when you just do it; and by just do it I mean execute the plan.
  5. Celebrate your success! My suggestion is that, depending on your goal, you celebrate as you reach the varying milestones along the way.

What are you waiting for? Get started!

 

 

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Beginnings

As humans we spend a lot of time thinking about the end. We ask questions like, ‘what’s your end game?’  ‘Where do you want to end up?’ or ‘where do you see this going?’ We do things like create a bucket list in an attempt to be sure we get in the things we wish to do before we reach the end.

Rarely do we concentrate our efforts on the beginning. We frequently live our lives thinking about the end game; Trudging through our days to get to the evening or making our way through the week to celebrate the weekend. We live our lives as if it is just something to get through.

Today, you get to breathe unassisted for 24 hours. What else will you do with that time?

 

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SMART goal setting

Like it or not, goal setting is a central and essential aspect of life. For some of us, this is a mindful process, however many others are unaware of the goal setting act and therefore have very little direction or purpose. You may be surprised to learn that you are setting goals on a daily basis. Some are relatively small and seemingly insignificant such as deciding what you will eat for lunch, while others are more important and relevant to your potential accomplishments.

So today let’s talk about setting SMART goals in life; mostly the big GOALS, but also some of the small goals. A SMART goal refers to a method of goal setting and not just intelligent goals. It is a five step method of making your goals well-dressed and ready to be met.

 

= Specific

When you first begin thinking about your goal the goal may be very vague (i.e. I’ll eat lunch today) However, as you plan for your goal you MUST become very specific about your goal. (i.e. I am having lunch today at noon with Jane at my favorite restaurant).

A specific goal should clearly state what you want to accomplish, why it is an important goal, and how you intend to accomplish the goal.

 

= Measurable

You need to be able to determine, without question, whether or not you are successful in achieving your goal. In order to do this, you need to create a way to measure your progress and your end result.

A measurable goal should include a plan with targets and milestones that you can use to make sure you’re moving in the right direction during the process and should clearly tell you when you’ve completed the process.

 

= Attainable

While goals may often pull you out of your comfort zone and challenge you, if the goal and the parameters you have created are not realistic, you may be setting yourself up for failure. (i.e. I could set a goal to lose 100 lbs by next week; however, it is NOT an attainable goal)

Your goals need to be realistic and include action plans that break your overall goal down into smaller, manageable feats.

 

= Relevant

Does this goal seem worthwhile? Are you willing to work toward fulfilling this goal? If the answer is no to either of these questions, then this isn’t the goal for you….move on! If the answer is yes, get moving!

 

= Time-Based

Goals cannot be open-ended; every goal should be limited by a period of time. A goal with out a timeline is just a wish (i.e. Someday I’m going to learn to play the guitar). Your timeline may vary by weeks, months or years depending on what the goal may be, but a defined timeline is vital in order for you to commit to the goal.

What goals are you setting today?

 

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Be Smart Implementing New Found Inspiration

After yesterdays blog post I was thinking about the things I am more grateful for in my life. So, I started a list. The first thing I wrote on my list was my health. It seemed liked a good place to start; without being healthy many things in life become much more difficult.

With my new inspiration, I decided to start some yard tasks I have been avoiding. It felt great to see the progress of my labors and I was proud of my accomplishments at the end of the day. Then, after dinner it started. PAIN!

I naturally thought, ‘oops, over did it’ but the pain was relentless. Nothing I could do seemed to relieve it. I considered that it may be a heart attack, but then dismissed this thought. The reality is that I have let my body become a body at rest. The movement and exertion were too much for my sedentary body.

The moral of my story is, be smart be safe, and remember if you haven’t been active in a while, don’t over do it. Go slow! Reintroduce (or introduce) your body to exercise at a reasonable pace. Learn from my mistake 🙂

 

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